Claiming criminal injury compensation can be a long process. Due to the sensitive nature of the situation, the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority only allows victims to claim once for each criminal incident.
Can you reopen a CICA claim?
It may be possible to reopen a CICA claim if you appeal against the decision within the appropriate time frame. Victims may be able to reopen compensation claims on medical grounds if their condition resulting from the injury worsens significantly. Some conditions might not manifest for several years after the victim’s original CICA claim was awarded. However, you cannot attempt to make a new claim for the same criminal injury that you already claimed compensation for. Doing so could result in you being prosecuted for fraud.
Can I make a CICA claim if one was already made for me?
In some cases, a parent or adult guardian may submit a CICA claim on behalf of a child victim. The victim will then not be able to make their own CICA claim when they turn 18. Again, if symptoms resulting from the criminal injury get much worse when the child has become an adult, they may be able to request that the CICA reopen their case and review the original award. If a CICA claim was made on your behalf when you were a child, you can access the money when you turn 18 years old, unless you requested advance payments.
Can I get multiple CICA payments?
In short: no. The CICA seeks to prevent what they call “double recovery” – which is when a claimant is compensated twice for the same claim. Multiple injuries may be considered as part of a claim, with the 3 injuries with the highest-value tariffs used to calculate the final award. This is usually 100%, then 30%, then 15% of the top 3 criminal injury compensation tariffs. Payment will then be made in one lump sum rather than via multiple instalments.
If you also claim financial support in the form of state benefits or insurance relating to loss of earnings due to your injury, then the CICA may deduct such expenses from your award total. In some cases, the CICA will make an interim payment if they are unable to make a decision while they wait for your medical condition to settle. For applicants under 18 years old, the CICA usually holds their compensation in an account until they become an adult. However, they can apply for advance payments if needed for the individual’s education or welfare.
Will I have to repay my CICA award?
Up until the CICA makes the final payment, they may reconsider the award if they need to account for changes in circumstances or new evidence. If the CICA has already made a final payment, they have the right to request partial or full repayment of the award if they find that your claim was not completed properly. This could be due to your failure to declare another payment that should have been deducted from your award, deliberately misleading the CICA about your claim, or failing to cooperate with the authorities to bring the criminal to justice.