If you’re a victim of crime, you may be able to get financial compensation in a number of ways.

If someone is convicted of a crime against you, the court may order them to pay you compensation. You can be compensated for a range of things, such as:

  • personal injury
  • losses from theft or damage to property
  • losses from fraud
  • being off work
  • medical expenses
  • travel expenses
  • pain and suffering
  • loss, damage or injury caused to or by a stolen vehicle.

If you want the court to consider awarding you compensation, you need to tell the police. You will need to give them details about the loss or damage you’ve suffered. The police will give this information to the Crown Prosecution Service, who will then make the request in court.

If the court decides an offender must pay you compensation, it will be limited to what they can afford and may depend on the sentence the court has given them.

For example, the court will not usually order an offender to pay compensation if they’re being sent to prison. The compensation may not cover the full cost of your damage or loss and often the offender will be able to pay it in instalments. The offender makes the payments to the court, which will then pass the money on to you.

The court has to make sure the offender pays the compensation. If you have any questions about this, you should speak to the clerk of the court or the court manager. You shouldn’t discuss this with the offender.

If you’ve been injured by a violent crime, you can apply for compensation from the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA).

You will be eligible if the crime has been committed in the past two years, and if it was reported to the police as soon as possible.

It doesn’t matter whether the offender has been caught, but there are other rules which affect your chances of getting any money.

The process can be complicated and take a long time, but we can direct you to information that explains the system, help you find the CICA’s online application form or put you in contact with their telephone contact centre.

If you want to make a claim, remember you’ll have to go over the details of the crime again. You might find this upsetting, but we can talk with you about the impact of the crime. You can claim for both physical and mental injury but will need to provide medical evidence to support your claim.

You can get more information from the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority online or by calling their helpline on 0300 003 3601.

We can help you to access information from the CICA, to find their online application form or to contact the CICA by telephone. We can also provide support if you find going over the details of the crime distressing.

Our service is completely free and confidential.

For more information contact your local Victim Support office.

For people on very low incomes, temporary financial support may be available from the Hardship Fund.

The Hardship Fund provides temporary financial support if you experience a violent crime and are on a low income.

More information about violent crime, including assault, and gun and knife crime.