The Government is reported to have made a dramatic u-turn on planned cuts to the compensation received by victims of violent crime in Britain.
The Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme – administered by the CICA – provides compensation to innocently injured victims of crime. Plans had been made however, to limit payments to those victims who were not suffering from serious injuries.
The plans had been considered as a way of reducing the cost of the scheme, which costs £449million annually. The plans would have cut this figure by £50million, as part of deficit reduction measures.
The u-turn on the planned cuts has been welcomed by members of the Shadow Cabinet, who had suggested that the cuts would have shown the government as out of touch by putting deficit-reduction ahead of compassion for crime victims.
The decision to scrap the plans comes just a week after former Justice Secretary Ken Clarke was replaced by Chris Grayling. If the plans had gone ahead, payments for less serious injuries such as sprains and fractures would have been removed.
A spokesperson for the Ministry of Justice confirmed that the Government is still looking for ways to reform the scheme and put it on a more sustainable financial footing.
Criminal injury compensation totalling £5million was paid to victims of crime in Hampshire last year, it is being reported.
The Southern Daily Echo reports that the figure was paid out by the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA), who pays compensation to people who are innocent victims of violent crime, such as assaults. Payments range from £1,000 to £500,000.
The figures show that the amount of compensation paid in Hampshire has risen in the last ten years. In the 2001/02 reporting year, £2million was paid out, compared to the £5million in 2011/12. In total, £37million has been paid out during the last decade.
The paper reports that the way the scheme works is set to be discussed by politicians next week, with any changes taking place within the month. The controversial planned changes could see payments reduced for ‘temporary’ injuries and some serious injuries in an effort to cut costs and reduce the deficit by the Government.
Such changes have been criticised by a union that represents shop workers (USDAW), who state that members that make a claim after being attacked in their shops would be affected.
Over £200million is spent every year by the Government on the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme, which is administered by the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority.
A girl who was savaged by a dog has been awarded £12,000 in compensation it has been revealed.
Toni Clannachan was attacked by a Japanese Akita fighting dog whilst she was playing in a neighbour’s home in September 2010.She was left with severe injuries to her face that included a severed lip and a 5 inch gash in her cheek.
The injuries required 100 stitches to treat and numerous surgical procedures. Despite this, she has been left with scars on her face, although she is planning to undergo specialist treatment to try and reduce these.
The dog had previously attacked another dog, and the neighbour that owned it was convicted of failing to control the animal after it attacked Toni. The dog was ordered to be put down.
The family sought compensation from the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority, who compensates innocent victims of crime. The CICA initially refused to pay out, stating that the attack was an accident rather than a crime.
However, the Daily Record reports that this decision has been overturned at an appeal hearing, and Toni will receive dog attack compensation of £11,990. The money will be kept in a trust fund until she is 18.
A man suffered minor whiplash injuries after an incident involving a portable loo.
The man was attending the Hunstanton Lifestyles festival over the Diamond Jubilee holiday weekend. The festival included live music along with demonstrations of extreme sports such as kitesurfing and BMX skills.
The injured man was staying at the campsite setup especially for the event, and paid a visit to the site’s toilets in the early hours of the Saturday morning.
Whilst the man was in the portable toilet cubicle it was pushed to the ground. The toilet landed with the door facing the ground and the man was trapped inside.
The Eastern Daily Press is reporting that the man suffered injuries in the incident, including minor whiplash type symptoms and damage to his shoulder.
Police in the area are appealing for any witnesses or information relating to the incident to come forward. Anyone with information should contact Hunstanton police station or alternatively contact the police anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
It is unclear if the injuries the man received in the assault are severe enough to warrant compensation under the CICA scheme that is designed to compensate those innocently injured in a criminal act.
Justice Secretary, Ken Clarke, has announced plans to change compensation rules for victims of terror attacks outside the UK.
The changes have been announced as part of wider plans to alter the rules surrounding compensation for victims of crime. The plans would give UK citizens injured in attacks overseas the same legal rights to compensation as those that are injured on these shores.
The future claims look set to be made through the government backed Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority, which currently deals with claims for criminal injury compensation. The changes would also allow those injured in attacks since 2002 to seek retrospective financial support. Many terrorist attacks have taken place in these years, such as the attacks in Mumbai in 2008.
The plans have been welcomed by politicians of all parties, who have stated that the move will provide victims with necessary support.
Ken Clarke himself called the proposal “an enormous advance on a situation where previously nothing had been done.”
Other proposed changes to the CICA scheme include charging criminal offenders a “victim surcharge” of between £15 and £120. These charges could add up to an estimated £50m, which will go towards the costs of paying compensation to those blamelessly injured by a violent crime.
A taxi driver who had his ear bitten off in a vicious assault is battling to get compensation for his injuries.
Trevor Blyth was a victim of assault whilst at work in his taxi in Grimsby in February. A 17 year old youth – Luke Donner – shouted abuse at the driver and smashed in one of the vehicle’s windows.
Mr Blyth got out of his taxi to confront him, but the youth attacked him and bit off part of his ear. Mr Donner has since been sentenced to three and a half years in prison for grievous bodily harm in regards to the incident.
The Grimsby Telegraph is reporting that Mr Blyth sought criminal assault compensation from the CICA for the injuries he suffered. He suffered financially as a result of the accident as he was unable to work whilst he recovered, losing £3,500 in wages. He had to undergo two surgical procedures to reconstruct his ear.
The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) is the government backed organisation that compensates innocent victims of crime. However, it is being reported that they are refusing to pay out to Mr Blyth in this case. This is because they say that getting out of the taxi after the window was smashed was “antagonising” behaviour.
Mr Blyth reports to the paper that this reason makes him feel like it was his own fault he was attacked. He also states that he intends to appeal the decision. He can even take the case to an independent tribunal if the appeal is not successful.
The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) has paid out a total of over £218,000 compensation so far to victims of the Cumbria shootings tragedy.
Derrick Bird, a 52 year old taxi driver, shot and killed 12 people on the 2nd of June last year. He left another 11 people injured by his actions.
Now the News and Star newspaper is reporting that the CICA has released the figure of compensation it has paid out so far. Up to now 48 victims of the tragedy have applied to the organisation to make a claim. These include those injured and the immediate relatives of those killed.
£84,025 has been paid out amongst the injured, whilst £134,257 has been split amongst the grieving relatives. It is expected the number of claims made will rise.
This news comes after there has been criticism of the CICA for cutting the compensation paid to the grieving parents of one those innocently killed. They were given half the amount of other victims due to the fact that their son had a criminal record for a minor offence committed twenty years ago.
The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority is a government organisation set up to compensate the innocent victims of crime.
A man has been jailed after failing to pay firework accident compensation to an employee who was blinded by a firework.
Chris Hignell was an employee of fireworks display organiser Jason Edgecombe when the incident occurred back in 2008. The firm JWP Fireworks was putting on a display when a professional grade mortar went off in Mr Hignell’s face. He suffered devastating injuries in the accident including being blinded in one eye.
Jason Edgecombe was ordered to pay him £5,000 in compensation, after he was found guilty of breaking health and safety regulations and using false insurance certificates. He was given a 36 week prison sentence, suspended for two years on the condition that he made regular payments towards the compensation amount. In October though he missed a £200 instalment payment, and later in December failed to appear in court in relation to another breach of his suspended sentence. Last week, the Bristol Evening Post is reporting that he was sentenced to 88 days in prison.
Mr Hignell, who underwent 19 reconstructive surgical procedures, still cannot go back to work due to the fact that medical staff have told him it takes the brain five years to adjust to losing the sight of one eye.
In legal terms, Mr Hignell was the victim of a criminal act, and is seeking compensation from the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority, the government body which pays criminal injury compensation to innocent victims. However, his application has been turned down twice already, and he has a final appeal hearing later this month.
A second day of student protests took place on Wednesday in London and across the country.
Although most of the protests passed peacefully, Whitehall saw a measure of violence once again amongst the 10,000 protesters. In total seven police officers were injured and 15 other people too.
In total 32 arrests were made after violence saw vandalism of buses, bus shelters, windows of buildings and one police van. The violence however paled in comparison to the riots at Millbank, London two weeks ago. This saw the infamous incident during which a fire extinguisher was thrown from a roof at police officers below.
Although protest leaders – from the National Campaign Against Fees and Cuts (NCAFC) – announced the day a great success, they criticised the ‘kettling’ technique used by the police. This kept protesters cordoned off in the freezing November cold for over 6 hours. They also announced more plans to protest at the end of the month against the sharp rise in university tuition fees to £9,000 a year.
The people injured in the protests, both police officers and civilians may be eligible for compensation if they can prove they were innocently injured by a criminal act. The criminal injuries compensation authority (CICA) is a government body which compensates victims of crime.
The system which provides innocent victims of crime with criminal injury compensation looks set to be reviewed in the legal aftermath of the 7/7 bombings.
In the House of Commons yesterday, David Winnick, the Labour party MP for Walsall North asked Kenneth Clarke how many of the 7/7 victims were still waiting for compensation over five years on. He also asked if the Justice Secretary was aware that there was dissatisfaction at the amount of compensation received in the cases that had been settled.
In response, Mr Clarke stated the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority that the coalition has inherited needs to be “re-examined”, announcing that the scheme had been under funded by the previous government to keep up with claims. This re-examination will look at how to make the system quicker and more efficient. In the case of the bombing victims, Mr Clarke said all was being done to get them compensation “as quickly as possible”.
In all 52 people were killed in the suicide bomb attacks on the tube and a bus in London 2005. It has been reported that so far (up to July this year) £11 million pounds has already been paid out in compensation to victims.
The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority is the government organisation which pays compensation to innocent victims who have been physically or mentally injured by a criminal act.