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Compensation

The maximum amount of criminal compensation payable to victims of crime for offences committed in Western Australia after 1 January 2004 is $75,000, or $150,000 for a series of offences committed by the same offender.

Interim payments are available for treatment, reports or funeral costs.

Compensation is available for injuries and certain defined losses as set out in the Criminal Injuries Compensation Act 2003. An application may be made for an incident reported to the police even if no one was identified, charged or convicted of the offence. An application can be lodged by:

  • the victim of an offence where he or she was injured, for compensation for the injury and for financial loss suffered as a result
  • a close relative of a person killed as the result of an offence, for funeral expenses and loss of support.

Injury includes bodily harm, mental or nervous shock or pregnancy resulting from an offence. Compensation may cover:

  • pain and suffering
  • loss of enjoyment of life
  • loss of income
  • treatment expenses, and
  • other incidental expenses, such as travel for treatment or damage to personal items such as clothing and spectacles.

In the case of a death, a close relative can apply for funeral expenses he or she incurred and for loss to dependants of the financial support of the deceased.

The amount of compensation awarded will depend on the extent of injuries and the losses suffered. The maximum award depends on the date the offence occurred:

22 January 1971 - 17 October 1976

$2,000

18 October 1976 - 31 December 1982

$7,500

1 January 1983 - 31 December 1985

$15,000

1 January 1986 - 30 June 1991

$20,000

1 July 1991 - 31 December 2003

$50,000

1 January 2004 - present

$75,000

An application must be lodged within three years from the date of the offence or the last offence. The application should be made when the police inquiries and any prosecution are complete and when the victim has reached the maximum stage of recovery from injuries, except where interim payments are sought for treatment, reports or funeral costs.

If the claim is more than three years old, an application may still be made, but the applicant must apply in writing for an extension of time, giving reasons for the delay.

Services available

To apply for compensation telephone (08) 9425 3250, fax (08) 9425 3271 or write to the Chief Assessor of Criminal Injuries Compensation for an application form. This form is also available online in the downloads box below. You will also have to provide reports and other documents to support your application.

You can submit your own application or engage a solicitor to act on your behalf. If you engage a solicitor, the assessor cannot reimburse the legal costs incurred. Legal Aid Western Australia may also be able to assist with Criminal Injuries compensation applications. Legal Aid can be contacted on 1300 650 579 for further details. Community Legal Centres may be able to assist. There is no fee for lodging your application.

In the majority of cases, applications are dealt with by an assessor from the information provided by you. The assessor may obtain information from other agencies and may also require you to attend a hearing, which will be conducted in private and as informally as possible. A convicted offender will, in most cases, be given notice of the application and may be provided with edited copies of documents in support of your claim.

Your application is confidential, however, copies of decisions made by the assessors are published on the AustLii website. In special cases, the assessors can order that names of people awarded compensation are not made public. This is usually the case for awards involving sexual offences or juvenile offenders.

Action may be taken to recover money from a convicted offender, however the applicant will not be involved in these proceedings.

The Office of Criminal Injuries Compensation cannot give legal advice.

Appeals

If you disagree with the assessor's decision, you can lodge an appeal in the District Court within 21 days from the date of the assessor's decision. The offender may also appeal.

The appellant must serve copies of the notice of appeal on:

  • the Chief Assessor, Criminal Injuries Compensation
  • the Director General, Department of the Attorney General
  • the applicant or the offender, if a person was convicted of the offence.

Application form

Application forms can be downloaded below.

Before completing the application form, please see the guidelines also available below.

When the form has been completed, it must be signed by the applicant and sent to:

Chief Assessor
Criminal Injuries Compensation
GPO Box F317
PERTH WA 6841

Please ensure all documentation required is completed and attached. Please ensure you keep copies of the documents submitted with the application.

If you require information from WA Police, refer to the WA Police Information Sheet.


Last updated: 2-Nov-2017

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