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Domestic Violence: Criminal Injuries Compensation

Ministry of Justice written question – answered on 15th February 2017.

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Photo of Fiona Mactaggart Fiona Mactaggart Labour, Slough

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many victims of domestic violence received awards from the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority in 2016; what the average length of time was between application and receipt of such an award; and what the average value of such awards was.

Photo of Phillip Lee Phillip Lee The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Justice

The information requested can be found in the table below.

Victims of domestic abuse

2016

Number of victims who received an award

234

Average time taken between application and receipt of award

612 days

Average amount of award

£7,497.74

From 1 February 2015 it became mandatory to indicate the nature of the assault when applying for compensation. Previously, victims of domestic violence and others did not have to declare this information. The data provided therefore may not include all victims of domestic violence who received a payment of compensation from the CICA in 2016. This may also include those who suffered family violence.

To ensure the application of the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme is as robust as possible there are safeguards built in. If any applicant disagrees with a decision they can apply for a review. If they remain unhappy they can appeal to an independent tribunal. The table above includes cases in which the award was paid after review and appeal.

The minimum award a victim of domestic abuse can receive under the Scheme is £1,000. However, additional or higher injury awards may be made for disabling mental injuries, depending on the length of time that the applicant’s symptoms persist. In some complex cases, where medical treatment is ongoing or the level of recovery is unknown, it may be in the best interests of an applicant not to settle their claim until the long term implications of an injury can be properly assessed.

During 2016 CICA revised its operating model and undertook a major recruitment exercise to help improve the efficiency of the service it provides to applicants. This included increasing its staff compliment by around 15 per cent since 31 March 2016, refining the online application process and developing its online customer portal.

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