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Criminal Injuries Compensation

If you’re a victim of crime and have sustained an injury as a result of the crime, you may be able to claim criminal injuries compensation. Regardless of whether a person has been identified, charged or convicted of the offence, you can apply for compensation under the Criminal Injuries Compensation Act.

Shine Lawyers have expert criminal injury lawyers in Western Australia (WA) who can help you get the compensation you need.

How criminal injury compensation gets calculated in WA

Depending on the nature of your criminal injuries compensation claim, generally speaking, a monetary value is placed on the gap between your predicted life path before the injury, and your actual life path since the injury.

To find out more about Criminal Injuries Compensation Claims, see our Common Questions section below.

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Common Questions

The Criminal Injuries Compensation Act is designed to provide compensation if you suffer bodily or mental harm, nervous shock or pregnancy, or if there is a death resulting from an offence.

You may be able to claim for criminal injuries compensation if you're:

  • The victim of an offence and are physically or mentally injured
  • The victim of an offence and experience financial loss as a result of an injury
  • A close relative of a person killed as a result of an offence (e.g. a spouse, de facto partner, parent, grandparent, step-parent, child, step-child or grandchild) and experience financial loss as a result of that offence

Injuries may include physical or psychological injuries, a sexual offence, or an actual or threatened assault or injury to a person.

It's important that you have reported, or are willing to report, the incident to the police so that we can establish there was a crime committed.

It also has to be established that you've suffered bodily harm, mental or nervous shock, pregnancy, or a close relative was killed as a result of a criminal offence.

Criminal Injuries Compensation is a Western Australian Government scheme, and all compensation awards are paid by the State.

Thereafter the Criminal Injuries Assessor determines whether or not the offender, if identified, should reimburse the State for all or part of the compensation that you have been awarded. In certain circumstances you may not wish the offender to be notified of your claim, and the Assessor will take this into account.

Under the Criminal Injuries Compensation Act, it’s possible to obtain compensation for:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of enjoyment of life
  • Loss of income
  • Current and future medical expenses
  • Other incidental expenses; e.g., travel and loss of clothing and personal items

Where a death has occurred, a close relative can apply for funeral expenses and loss of financial support.

Alternatively, you may have a common law claim, which includes issues like:

  • Negligence
  • Duty of care
  • Battery (physical violence)

Your criminal injuries compensation lawyer will be able to provide legal support and advice on your injury, assess your eligibility for criminal injuries compensation, a common law claim and the criminal injuries compensation benefits available to you.

The amount you receive will depend on the extent of your injuries and the losses you've suffered.

Changes to legislation have increased the maximum amount of criminal compensation payable to victims of crime for offences committed in Western Australia after 1 January 2004 to $75,000.

How long your claim will take will depend upon how complicated your injuries are and how long it takes before your injuries stabilise.

Once this has happened, doctors will then be able to give an opinion about your loss and any future medical treatments needed.

Time limits apply for making a criminal injuries compensation claim. Under Western Australian Law, there is a three-year time limit on making a compensation claim for criminal injuries.

It's possible for a claim (such as childhood sexual crime) to be brought outside the prescribed time limit; however, it's important that you obtain legal advice from your criminal injuries compensation lawyer as soon as possible to safeguard your interests in relation to the common law and criminal injuries compensation time limits.

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