If you have been a victim of crime you might be entitled to financial help to make life easier following your experience. If you are unsure how to find out more about this process, a number of organisations exist providing free advice and support to ensure you receive any financial entitlement you are entitled to.
Am I eligible to make a claim?
You might qualify for financial help if you:
- Are a victim of crime
- Are a close relative of someone who has died because of a crime.
- Have witnessed a serious crime, intervened and were seriously injured.
What type of financial help is available?
Victims of crime can receive financial help in a number of ways. Here are the two main sources:
If you are a victim of vandalism, burglary or theft, your car or home insurance policy might provide cover. To find out, contact your insurer or read through your policy carefully. Insurance providers usually require a crime reference number to process a claim.
There are various benefits available for people recovering from serious injuries. If a relative has died as a result of a crime, you might also be able to claim bereavement benefits. You can also apply for financial help if you have to take time off low-paid work because you’ve been the victim of a violent crime. A list of organisations offering free advice and information to help you apply for any benefits you’re entitled to is below.
A victim is sometimes granted compensation by a judge during the sentencing of an offender. This is known as a Compensation Order. You might also be able to apply to the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) if you are unable to receive compensation anywhere else. The process can be drawn out, however, and this is not suitable for people who need urgent financial help.
Where can I get advice?
You don’t need to hire a solicitor or claims management company to apply for any of the financial help above. The following organisations provide free advice:
Action Fraud is the UK’s national reporting centre for fraud and internet crime where you should report fraud if you have been scammed, defrauded or experienced cybercrime. The site also gives advice on protecting against fraud and provides a list of useful organisations.
This page provides more information on getting financial support for victims of crime and also provides a link to the online form to claim compensation for criminal injury.