News

Same roof 1979 CICA rule could be abolished in landmark ruling

Groundbreaking Court of Appeal decision on the issue of pre 1979 abuse cases

In a landmark decision handed down by the Court of Appeal on the 24th July 2018, judges have confirmed that the CICA 1979 “same roof” rule applied by the government in assessing abuse compensation is deemed “arbitrary and unfair.

The victim in this case contended that the decision to reject her application for an award of compensation because of the ‘same roof’ rule was incompatible with article 14 of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms (the “Convention”), as incorporated into UK law by the Human Rights Act 1998 and was therefore unlawful.

The 1979 same roof rule forms part of the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) compensation scheme for victims of crime and allows the government to refuse claims from victims of family orientated abuse if they lived with the abuser before October 1979.  Up to now any such claims would be refused with no prospect of appeal. This had led to many thousands of victims being denied compensation. This ruling should lead to a change in policy by the CICA who can no longer apply such an unfair criteria to otherwise entirely justified compensation claims.

This is a huge step forward in the fight to reform the compensation system which up to now has been very much biased against those abused in the 1960’s and 1970’s. We welcome the ruling and encourage all victims who may have been refused compensation previously to get in touch with us. Call 01423 593002 for advice on your particular case.