A Guide To Victim Of Knife Crime Compensation Claims

If you’ve been the victim of a knife attack, you might not realise that in some cases you could receive compensation for your injuries. However, the claim won’t usually be against the criminal who stabbed you. Instead, there’s a scheme operated by the government called the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA). This guide looks at how to claim victim of knife crime compensation through the CICA. We’ll cover eligibility for claiming, any specific time limits, and what compensation could be awarded in a successful claim through the CICA scheme.

Legal Helpline specialise in helping claimants with any type of personal injury claim. We do this by offering free legal advice on the claims process. Also, our advisers can assess your claim on a no obligation basis. In cases where they believe compensation could be awarded, they would introduce you to a personal injury solicitor from our panel who’ll work on a No Win No Fee basis.

If you’re already in a position to begin a claim, please call us today on 0161 696 9685.

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A Guide To Making A Victim Of Knife Crime Compensation Claim

Victim of knife crime compensation claims

Victim of knife crime compensation claims

This guide provides information on when you could claim compensation for knife injuries. We’ll also look at what injuries could lead to a claim, knife crime statistics and first aid that could help following a knife attack. We then look at how the compensation scheme works, and what compensation could be awarded in a successful claim through the CICA scheme. We answer some common questions which include:

  • Can you sue someone for stabbing you?
  • How long do I have to claim?
  • Can you get compensation if you have a criminal record?

The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) was established by the government to provide compensation for injuries sustained by blameless victims of crimes. The scheme has its own criteria which are different, to normal personal injury claims.

Some of the key points relating to CICA claims are:

  • You need to claim within 2-years of the date of the crime. This is less than the normal 3-year personal injury claims time limit
  • The crime must have been reported to the police
  • If you have a criminal record (with unspent convictions), you’re not allowed to claim through the CICA scheme
  • Compensation can be paid for physical or psychological injuries as well as some financial costs

As well as claiming for victim of knife crime compensation, it’s also possible to claim for somebody who’s not able to do so themselves.

We have a panel of solicitors who specialise in criminal injury claims. Our advisers would provide free advice on what you could claim for and explain what types of evidence you should gather to support your claim. Please get in touch if you require any further information bearing in mind that the CICA has very strict rules that apply to claims filed through the scheme.

What Is A Stabbing Injury?

A stabbing injury is where a knife, bladed implement or other sharp object is used as weapon and penetrates the skin. The question of, “Can you survive a stab wound?” depends entirely on what injuries are sustained in a knife attack.

In some cases, where the knife hasn’t damaged any internal organs or arteries, a full recovery may be possible following surgery. Paramedics as well as accident and emergency departments often react heroically and manage to save the lives of knife crime victims but the speed in which they operate is crucial. In cases where there’s extensive blood loss, the sooner the victim is treated, the better their chances of survival.

People often ask, “Is a stab wound a laceration?” The answer is they are two different types of wound. Stabbings are injuries caused by a sharp, pointed weapon. A laceration, on the other hand, is a tear of the tissue caused by shearing. Therefore, the two aren’t the same.

We’ll look at how you treat a stab wound with first aid in a later section of this guide.

Statistics – Stabbing Injuries And Knife Crime In The UK

In the year ending March 2019, there were 47,000 knife crimes recorded in England according to statistics from the UK parliament. According to the report, this is the highest number of crimes reported since 2011.

If you’ve followed the UK press over the last year or so, the numbers appear to confirm reports on increased knife crime across the capital city and other inner-city areas in the UK.

The report goes on to state that there were 285 homicides involving knives in the year ending March 2018 which was a significant rise over the previous year (212). The number of hospital admissions for 2018/19 also increased by 2% on the previous recorded period.

First Aid For Victims Of Stab Injuries

Arriving at the scene of a knife crime can be a horrendous experience for anybody, especially those who’ve not been exposed to the types of injuries which could be sustained before. However, if possible, you should try to follow some first aid guidance according to the British Red Cross  for which there is a link at the end of this guide.

Firstly, it’s important to put pressure on the wound to try and reduce blood loss. Then, call 999 yourself or if somebody else is there, ask them to make the call. It’s essential that pressure be applied to the wound until an ambulance arrives.

Even if the stab wound doesn’t look serious, you should contact the emergency services as not all wounds will be obvious, and any delay could prove fatal.

Should You Pull a Knife Out Of A Wound?

The priority when dealing with any knife injury is to stop the flow of blood. However, if a part of the blade or weapon remains in the wound, applying pressure could increase the amount of damage sustained by the victim. Therefore, the advice from the Red Cross is to leave the foreign body in the wound.  You can still place pressure around the wound to help stem the flow of blood as much as possible.

It’s really important that you don’t try to remove the knife or weapon from the wound either. That’s because the blade might actually be stopping blood from leaving the body and also, you could cause further damage by removing it. The knife or other type weapon, should only be removed at the hospital by qualified doctors.

Could I Claim If The Attack Was Unprovoked?

A crime doesn’t have to be planned or targeted for you to be eligible to claim compensation through the CICA. If you happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time, you could be eligible to claim compensation for any stabbing injury caused by an unprovoked attack. Remember, the claim won’t be made against the criminal who attacked you, it would be file through the CICA scheme. In short,even if you don’t know the criminal or if the police are unable to identify them, you could still be entitled to apply for compensation through the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme.

You must report the incident to police as soon as you are able to once you’ve been treated by a medical professional. The police reference number and your medical records are essential not only because they would be used as evidence to support your claim via the CICA scheme but without a Police report, your claim would not be considered by the authority.

We understand that any type of attack will be difficult to discuss with a stranger. That’s why our advisers will work at your pace. They won’t put any pressure on you, and you’ll be under no obligation to proceed with a claim should you not wish to, so please feel free to call and discuss your claim or ask any questions you might have.

Evidence Which Could Support A Knife Crime Compensation Claim

If you are attacked with a knife and decide that you want to claim compensation, you’ll need to provide evidence of what happened. Without it, the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority won’t consider a claim filed through the CICA scheme.

Some of the steps to take following a knife crime include:

  • Reporting the crime to police. A reference number will be provided which would be used by CICA to obtain confirmation of what happened from the Police
  • Seek medical treatment for your injuries. At a later date, medical records would be used to prove what level of injury you sustained, the damage caused, what treatment you underwent and the prognosis
  • Take photographs of your injuries as these could be used in conjunction with medical records
  • Keep any receipts or bank statements that prove any financial losses caused by your injuries

When you provide this kind of information to your solicitor, it makes it easier to prove what happened and the level of suffering you went through. In turn, this can make it easier for your solicitor to ensure you are awarded a fair level of knife attack compensation for the injuries you sustained and psychological damage you suffered.

Victim Of Knife Crime Compensation Claims Calculator

We’re often asked, “how much compensation do you get for criminal injuries?”. The truth is that no two claims are the same so amounts will vary. However, to give you an example of compensation amounts awarded for different injuries, we provide the victim support compensation table below. It shows some amounts awarded for different injuries which have been taken from the Judicial College Guidelines.  Solicitors, insurers and courts use the JCG  to calculate compensation amounts awarded in successful claims.

Type Of InjurySeverityRangeNotes
Fatal InjuryFull Awareness£11,770 to £22,350The compensation listed here is for suffering caused prior to death. This bracket covers suffering with full awareness before a 4 to 5 week period of different levels of conciousness followed by death within a couple of weeks to 3 months.
Fatal InjuryFollowed by Unconsciousness£9,870 to £10,010Excruciating pain for up to 3 hours followed by unconciousness and death in around 2 weeks.
Fatal InjuryImmediate Unconsciousness/Death after Six Weeks£3,530 to £4,120When the injured party is unconciouss immediately following the injury and death occurs within 6 months.
Fatal InjuryImmediate Unconsciousness/Death within One Week£1,290 to £2,620Immediate unconcioussness and death within a week of the injury.
Digestive System£6,190 to £11,820Penetrating stab wounds which causes damage to the digestive system.
ArmSevere£36,770 to £56,180An injury to the arm which doesn't require amputation. However, the symptoms will be the same as if the arm had been lost.
WristSignificant£22,990 to £36,770This type of injury will result in some permanent disability but there will be some limited, but useful, movement.
Hand Serious£52,310 to £79,360Serious damage to both hands which results in significant loss of function and severe cosmetic damage.
LegVery Serious£51,460 to £85,600An injury that resulst in permanent mobility problems. Crutches or walking aids may be required for the rest of the claimants life.

Importantly, each injury is compensated based on its severity. Also, the figures in the table only make up one part of your claim. That’s why it’s difficult to provide an average compensation amount for being stabbed. To ensure you receive the right level of compensation, our panel of solicitors use independent doctors to assess your injuries.

The medical assessment is usually carried out locally to avoid lengthy travel times. The doctor will ask a number of questions and assess your wounds. Following this, they’ll write a report which shows the impact of your injuries and whether there will be any long-term suffering. This could include psychological harm as well as physical injuries. The report would be used, with other supporting evidence, to show the extent of your suffering and to calculate how much stab wound compensation you would receive in a successful claim filed through the CICA scheme.

Special Damages A Victim Of Knife Crime May Claim

When claiming for any type of stab injury, your solicitor can claim for general damages as well as special damages. In the previous section, the figures in the personal injury claims table provided amounts that could be paid in general damages which covers pain, suffering and loss of amenity caused by your injuries.

Special damages are awarded to cover financial costs you’ve incurred, or could incur in the future as a result of your injuries. Here are some examples:

  • Care Costs
    If you require support while recovering from your injuries, you could claim back any associated costs. For instance, you could claim for the fees charged by a professional carer. Also, you could claim for the time of a loved one or friend who assisted you
  • Travelling Costs
    The cost of travelling too and from medical appointment can soon build up. Therefore, you could claim for fuel or parking costs you’ve incurred as a result of your injuries
  • Medical Costs
    You’ll probably receive free treatment for most of your injuries on the NHS. However, it’s possible that you will have to cover the costs of prescriptions and some treatments not provided by the NHS. If that happens, you could claim these expenses back
  • Lost Income
    If you need time off work to recover or to attend medical appointments, you could claim back any earnings you lose as a result. In more serious cases, where your injuries affect your ability to work in the long-term, you could ask for future lost income to be paid as well

These are the special damages that could be paid in ordinary personal injury claims. Our panel of solicitors fully understand the CICA claims process and are therefore able to let you know what can and what cannot be included in special damages when they’ve assessed your claim.

Steps To Take If The Victim Of Knife Crime

Once you’ve gathered as much of the evidence as previously advised, we recommend you discuss your claim with a specialist. That’s because, even with evidence to support your claim, ensuring the CICA accept your application can be challenging because of the strict rules that apply to CICA claims.

A specialist personal injury solicitor will have the experience to know what you may be entitled to claim. This is important because if you don’t take into account potential future costs, such as medical care or lost earnings, you could end up not being awarded the right level of compensation. Remember, once you’ve settled your claim, you can’t ask for any more compensation further down the line. Therefore, it’s essential to file the claim through the CICA scheme correctly.

If you’re considering claiming for a stabbing injury through the CICA scheme, why not call our advisers today. They’ll give you free advice and offer a no obligation assessment of the claim to see if you’ve got enough evidence to proceed with an application through the CICA.

Why Choose To Claim Compensation With Legal Helpline?

Hopefully you’re now in the position to make a victim of knife crime compensation claim. If that’s the case, we hope you’ve also decided the you’ll let Legal Helpline assist you. Here’s a bit more information about how we work:

  • Our claims line is open for calls 24-hours a day 7-days a week
  • We offer a no obligation assessment of your claim as well as free legal advice about your claim
  • Our panel of solicitors work as efficiently as possible to try and reduce any potential delays
  • You’ll receive regular updates so you know how your claim is progressing
  • Finally, the solicitors on our panel will always try to ensure that you receive the right amount of compensation for your injuries

To find out more about the way Legal Helpline work, please discuss your claim with an adviser today.

No Win No Fee Stabbing Injury Compensation Claims

Something that worries many people when claiming criminal injuries compensation is the cost of hiring an experienced solicitor. We understand this concern and want to remove as much financial risk and stress from the claims process. Therefore, our panel of solicitors offer a No Win No Fee service for any claim they take on.

To begin the claim, the solicitor will need to take a look at what happened and the evidence you have. If the solicitor believes you have grounds for a claim to be submitted to the CICA, they’ll offer you a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA) to review and sign.

The CFA is a binding contract between both parties. Importantly, you’ll find 2 key pieces of information:

  • A clause which states you don’t have to pay solicitor’s fees unless you receive compensation
  • The success fee that you’ll pay if your case is won

A success fee is used to cover the time, work and effort of your solicitor. If you receive compensation, they’ll automatically deduct the success fee before you’re paid. Success fees are expressed in the CFA as a percentage of your compensation.

To find out whether you can make a personal injury claim on a No Win No Fee basis, check with a member of our team today.

Begin Your Victim Of Knife Crime Claim

Thanks for reading our guide about using a personal injury solicitor to claim victim of knife crime compensation. If you’ve been attacked with a knife and have decide that you’d like Legal Helpline to begin a claim with you, then please use one of the following methods to get in touch.

  • The easiest way to begin is to call a specialist on 0161 696 9685
  • Or, if you prefer, you could use our live chat facility to connect with an adviser
  • Finally, you could ask us to call you back by completing our online claims form

Whatever method you choose to get in touch, we’ll begin by assessing your claim. We’ll look at what happened, the evidence you have and how you suffered. Then, we could either offer you advice on what else you need to do or, if the case is strong enough, we could introduce you to a No Win No Fee solicitor from our panel.

Knife Crime Victim Resources

You’ve now reached the end of this guide about claiming victim of knife crime compensation. We hope that you’ve received all of the information you required. For further information, we’ve linked to some more further guides and some useful external resources as well.

The Ben Kinsella Trust – A British charity which aims to educate children to reduce knife crime in the UK.

Knife Crime Compensation – Information from the MET police on how to apply for the government’s knife crime compensation through CICA.

Knife Wound First Aid – Information from the British Red Cross on what do if you see somebody sustain stabbing injuries.

Assault Compensation Claims – Guidance on how a personal injury lawyer could help you claim for injuries sustained in an assault.

Assault At Work Claims – This guide provides information about personal injury claims following an assault in the workplace.

Hospital Negligence Claims – Information on claiming for negligence in a hospital which results in the death of a patient.

Article by BH

Editor HW