How To Make Sexual Abuse Claims Against A Paedophile? – How To Claim Compensation

sexual abuse claims against a paedophile guide

Sexual abuse by a paedophile compensation claims guide

By Fern Easton. Last Updated 8th March 2021.  Welcome to our guide on sexual abuse claims against a paedophile. Victims of sexual abuse where a paedophile is the perpetrator could seek compensation for the harm and suffering they were caused. They can bring their abuser to justice. Our guide provides information on how to make sexual abuse claims against a paedophile and the legal options available.

You could make a claim against your abuser by pursuing them through the courts. However, you would need to be sure they have enough money to pay the compensation you may be awarded in a successful sexual abuse claim. The other option that many victims of sexual abuse and rape choose when seeking compensation is to make an application to the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority. Both options are covered in our guide.

If you think you are ready to pursue a sexual abuse claim against your perpetrator, please contact a member of our team on 0800 073 8801.

Should you like more information on the legal process, what sort of evidence is needed to support your claim, and how a personal injury solicitor could assist you in pursuing a sexual abuse claim against a paedophile, please read on.

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A Guide To Sexual Abuse Claims Against A Paedophile

Whether you were subjected to sexual abuse by a paedophile in your youth, or when you were slightly older, you may be entitled to seek compensation for the harm you were caused. You could pursue a claim by taking civil action against your abuser, or you could submit an application to the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority.

It would not matter if the sexual abuse took place years ago, or if it is happening right now, providing you report it to the police, you could not only bring the perpetrator to justice but you could also be compensated for all the suffering you were caused.

Sexual abuse of any type is against the law. When a case involves a paedophile, the authorities must be notified as a matter of urgency to prevent further harm from being done to their victims.

If you were sexually abused by a paedophile when you were a minor, or you are concerned that a child you know could be the target of a paedophile, you should seek help, support and advice from people who are trained to recognise and deal with this type of serious crime against children.

Should you need further assistance, one of our experienced advisers can offer help, support, and advice on how best to proceed.

What Is Sexual Abuse By A Paedophile?

The term ‘sexual abuse’ encompasses any behaviour of a sexual nature by one person towards another person. Should the ‘forced abuse’ last a short time, it is referred to as ‘sexual assault’, and the perpetrator is called a ‘sexual abuser’.

When children are sexually abused, they are victims of a crime because, by law, they could not have given their ‘consent’ due to their young age. In short, when victims of sexual abuse are under the age of 16, the abuse they have been subjected to by a paedophile, or another perpetrator, is referred to in law as ‘child sexual abuse’.

There are different types of sexual abuse a paedophile may subject their victims to which could include the following:

  • Non-consensual sexual abuse where a person, child, or younger adult is forced by an abuser to commit acts of a sexual nature. This includes sexual assault and rape. It often involves unwanted kissing, fondling, touching, flashing, exposing a minor to pornographic material, sexual harassment, incest or domestic violence in the form of spousal sexual abuse

A perpetrator may use their position of power to sexually assault their victims. An example being when an adult abuses a child when they are in their place of work.

Types Of Sexual Abuse Experienced By Children

Where child sexual abuse is concerned, their assailant abuses them for their own sexual gratification. The same applies when the victim of sexual abuse by a paedophile or other assailant is an older adolescent.

The sexual abuse may include the following behaviours:

  • Inappropriate sexual comments
  • Exposing a minor or young adolescent to pornographic material
  • Raping a minor whether once or on multiple occasions

In the majority of sexual abuse cases, a child will know their abuser, with around 30% of perpetrators being relatives or family members and 60% being friends of the family. Around 10% of sexual abusers are people a child does not know, with most of these crimes being committed by males.

Women, however, commit around 6% of sexual abuse offences against girls, and 14% of sexual abuse offences against boys.

Consent In Sexual Abuse Claims

The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) is obliged to take into consideration the issue of ‘consent’ in all cases of sexual abuse. With this said, the authority would carefully consider all the circumstances surrounding this type of case especially when a minor, or older adolescent, is the victim of sexual abuse by a paedophile.

These claims can prove complex, especially when an abuser, in this instance a paedophile, has ‘groomed’ a child victim of sexual abuse. Often a child victim returns to their abuser and further sexual abuse is committed against them. As such, the authority will carefully consider each claim and whether a child could be categorised as a ‘victim’, which could entitle them to seek sexual abuse compensation for the harm they were caused at the hands of their abuser.

Could I Claim Through The CICA?

For the CICA to consider an application for sexual abuse compensation through their Scheme, the claimant must show they were the ‘blameless’ victim of a violent crime. For a claim to be accepted by the authority, there must have been an ‘injury’, whether physical or psychological. This includes post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

The CICA has strict rules that must be respected, and claimants must meet the necessary criteria for an application to be considered. There is also a strict time limit associated with CICA claims, although the authority can, in exceptional circumstances and in cases of historic sexual abuse, extend the deadline.

The sexual abuse must also have been reported to the police, and there must be Crime Reference Number (CRN). Without a police report, the CICA would not consider an application for compensation through the Scheme.

Because CICA claims are complex and you have to be eligible to file an application for compensation through the Scheme, it is far better to seek legal advice before submitting an application. 

The Psychological Or Physical Harm Only Became Apparent Later, Could I Still Claim?

As previously touched upon, victims of sexual abuse suffer physical injuries but they suffer psychological damage as well. All too often, the psychological harm caused only manifests itself years later when a child victim of sexual abuse reaches adulthood. The result is they experience the following feelings and emotions:

  • Guilt
  • Anxiety
  • Acute stress
  • Flashbacks
  • Nightmares
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Avoidance
  • Suicidal tendencies
  • Depression
  • Panic attacks

All of the above are typical symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder which victims of childhood sexual abuse often suffer from. Other things a sexually abused child may also have trouble doing could include the following:

  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Behavioural issues
  • Poor work performance
  • Difficulty in trusting anyone
  • Not being able to form meaningful relationships
  • Poor parenting
  • Substance abuse

It is also worth noting that victims of childhood sexual abuse are 6 times more likely to commit suicide, and many will go on to abuse others in the course of their lives.

Sexual abuse and child grooming statistics UK

The Crime Survey for England and Wales for the year ending 2019 gathered its data by surveying adults about sexual abuse that they’d experienced before the age of 16. The results of this survey suggested that around 3.1 million adults between the ages of 18 and 74 had been the victim of child sexual abuse, which accounts for 7.5% of the adult population.

Statistics relating to child abuse are often unreliable, as a lot of child abuse happens behind closed doors. Child abusers are manipulative and often convince their victims to keep the abuse secret. The CSEW’s results indicated that victims of non-contact sexual abuse were more likely to share what had happened than victims of contact sexual abuse. 82,8% of victims of non-contact sexual abuse shared what had happened to them, compared to 78.7% of rape victims and 75.6% of people who had suffered another kind of contact sexual abuse.

One of the CSEW’s findings, as shown in the graph below, is that the majority of sexual abuse that occurs before the victim is 16 will take place for less than a year.

The CSEW also revealed that children were most likely to be abused by a friend or acquaintance; this was the case in 37% of survey responses.

The majority of child sexual abuse reported in this survey occurred in the home, either in someone else’s home (40%) or the victim’s own home (37%) .

Time Limits In Which To Claim For Sexual Abuse By A Paedophile

As previously mentioned, a claim for sexual abuse compensation can be pursued through the Civil Courts. However, the perpetrator must have enough money to pay any compensation a court may award you. Should you file a personal injury claim against your abuser through the court, the statutory time limit is set at 3 years for you to do so.

Should you make an application for sexual abuse compensation through the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority, the time limit is 2 years. When a child is the victim of sexual abuse at the hands of a paedophile or other perpetrator, the time limit does not start to ‘run’ until they reach 18 years of age. In short, the application to the CICA must be submitted before the victim turns twenty years of age.

With this said, the CICA does have discretionary powers to extend the time limit, especially in cases of historic sexual abuse. However, the authority would look closely at the reasons why an application was not submitted within the deadline.

Should you need help and advice on how to submit an application to the CICA for sexual abuse, but you are not sure the deadline has passed, please speak to one of our advisers.

Could I Claim For Historical Abuse By A Paedophile?

It is possible to claim compensation for historical abuse by a paedophile through the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority. However, a report must be made to the police and you must obtain a Crime Reference Number for the CICA to consider your application. The time limit of two years would begin from the date you filed a report with the police.

However, the CICA would agree to extend the time limit if you can show that exceptional circumstances prevented you from submitting an application for compensation within the deadline.

If you would like more advice on how to make a historical sexual abuse claim through the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme, please speak to one of our advisers today.

Evidence Supporting Sexual Abuse Claims

Should your abuser have been caught, prosecuted, and convicted in a Criminal Court for the crime they committed against you, it would strengthen your case should you submit an application for sexual abuse by a paedophile through the CICA. With this said, an abuser does not have to be convicted for you to seek compensation, and the same can be said if the assailant is no longer alive.

The sort of evidence required when submitting an application for compensation to the CICA is as follows:

  • A detailed witness statement
  • A psychiatric report
  • A police report
  • A medical report
  • Witness statements and their contact details

If you need assistance in gathering the necessary evidence, please call one of our advisers today.

Sexual Abuse Claims Against A Paedophile Compensation Calculator

If you pursue a sexual abuse claim against your abuser through the courts, the compensation you may be awarded would be divided into two parts, namely general damages for the injuries you suffered, and special damages for any out of pocket expenses you were forced to pay out.

General damages awarded through a court would be based on the extent of the damage caused, with solicitors and courts using the Judicial College Guidelines as a basis for the amounts they award an injured party. The table below provides a general idea of the amount you could be awarded through a Civil Court:

Your injuryNotes
Psychiatric damage £1,440 - £108,620
PTSD - moderate to extremely severe£7,680 to £94,470

Type of InjuryCompensation
Criminal injury claims Up to £500,000
Rape£11,000 To £44,000 + there can be extras
Sexual assault resulting in pregnancy£5,500
Sexual assault resulting in STIs£5,500 to £22,000
Sexual assault resulting in the loss of a foetus£5,500

Should you pursue a claim for sexual abuse compensation through the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority, the amount you may be awarded would be calculated using the CICA tariff of injuries. The injuries you suffered must be listed in the tariff for the authority to consider payment. It must also be valued at one thousand pounds or more.

With this in mind, the CICA tariff scheme does have a specific category for cases involving sexual offences. The level of compensation awarded through the CICA Scheme would reflect the severity of a sexual assault and whether a victim was subjected to the abuse on one occasion or more than one time.

As such, a level one category of compensation for non-penetrative sexual acts over your clothing would mean that you could be awarded £1,000.

However, at the other end of the tariff scale, the amount that could be awarded through the Scheme for sexual abuse that results in physical injury and which lasted longer than 3 years, the CICA may payout a level 20 award of £44,000.

It is also worth noting that the money awarded for sexual abuse and sexual assault through the Scheme incorporates an amount to cover the mental harm that a victim may have been caused.

Special Damages Or Expenses Claimable

You may be able to claim ‘special damages’ when making a personal injury claim against your abuser through a Civil Court. These would be awarded as a way of compensating any expenses and costs you incurred because you were sexually abused by a paedophile or other abuser.

The sort of things you could seek to recover in your claim could include the following:

  • Medical expenses
  • Travel costs
  • Care costs
  • All other expenses linked to injuries whether psychological or physical

Should you make an application to the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority, you may be able to claim ‘special expenses’ and ‘loss of earnings’ through the Scheme. However, you must be able to show that your expenditure was essential and you must provide proof in the way of receipts and other relevant documents to support your expenses.

If you need assistance on what expenses and costs you may be able to include in a sexual abuse claim against a paedophile, whether through a court or through the CICA, please speak to a member of our team today.

No Win No Fee Sexual Abuse Claims Against A Paedophile

Once one of our solicitors has established you have a strong sexual abuse claim against your abuser, they would offer you No Win No Fee terms. This takes all the worry of having to pay a solicitor any fees whether upfront or ongoing.

No Win No Fee agreements were set in place to allow injured parties the opportunity to seek compensation for harm and damage they suffered through no fault of their own without having to worry about finding the funds to pay for a solicitor to represent them. However, even if a person is partially liable, they may still seek compensation although the amount awarded would reflect the level of responsibility they had.

When a No Win No Fee solicitor agrees to represent you, they would not ask for any fees whether upfront or during the process of claiming compensation for sexual abuse by a paedophile. Once the legal contract known as a Conditional Fee Agreement is signed, a lawyer can begin their investigations.

The only time you pay the solicitor a ‘success fee’ is when you are awarded compensation. The amount due is a percentage of the money you receive, and it is deducted directly from the amount paid out. Should your sexual abuse claim fail, or is refused by the CICA, the ‘success fee’ would no longer be payable because of the agreement you signed with the No Win No Fee solicitor who represented you.

Why Let Us Handle Your Claim Against A Paedophile?

You could choose to submit a sexual abuse application to the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority yourself and you have the right to do so. However, because the CICA rules and criteria are complex, it is far wiser to seek legal advice from a solicitor who boasts the necessary legal experience in handling CICA sexual abuse claims. This is where we can be of assistance. Our solicitors have decades of experience in representing victims of sexual abuse.

You may also pursue a claim through the Civil Courts yourself but again, the process can be challenging, and you need to know that your abuser has enough money to pay an amount awarded. Again, this is where one of our solicitors can be of assistance.

Other reasons why we believe we are the right people to talk to when seeking sexual abuse compensation are as follows:

  • Our reputation within the legal industry is second to none
  • We work hard to ensure the compensation awarded is both fair and acceptable
  • We would arrange for you to be examined by an independent consultant/specialist who would produce the all-important medical report required when claiming sexual abuse compensation for psychological damage
  • We would keep you apprised of all that is happening as your case progresses
  • Should a final settlement take longer to reach, we would negotiate that you receive ‘interim’ payments to avoid any financial hardship

To find out more on how we can assist you in pursuing a sexual abuse claim against a paedophile, please speak to one of our advisers today.

Speak To Us About A Claim Against A Paedophile

If you are worried about a child who may be the victim of sexual abuse by a paedophile, knowing who to contact and what to do is essential. The following link takes you to the Government website where you will find information on what you should do:

What to do if you are worried about a child being abused

If you would like more in-depth information regarding ‘consent’ in sexual abuse cases, please click on the link below:

Consent explained

For more information on claiming for post-traumatic stress disorder, please follow the link below:

PTSD claims

If you were the victim of historical sexual abuse and you would like more information on the process of claiming compensation, please click on the link below:

How to claim compensation for historical sexual abuse

For more information on CICA time limits associated with sexual abuse claims, please follow the link below:

CICA time limits

Thank you for reading our guide on sexual abuse claims against a paedophile.

Guide by HW

Edited by REB