Child Care Home Sexual Abuse Compensation Claims Guide – How To Claim? – Am I Eligible To Claim For Historical Child Abuse?
Updated by Max Mitrovic on 11th April 2022. Care homes are supposed to offer children in need a safe and secure environment to live in. If you were abused at the hands of an assailant, you could be entitled to seek child care home sexual abuse compensation for the pain and suffering you were caused.
There are care homes for children throughout the UK and while the majority are extremely well run, offering secure environments to minors and young adults in their care, sadly there are too many reports of children being subjected to sexual abuse in too many care home environments. If you or someone you know was the victim of care home sexual abuse, you can seek help and advice from people and organisations who understand what you have been put through.
At Legal Expert, we have handled many personal injury claims for people who were subjected to sexual abuse while in a care home. We understand how difficult it can be to talk about such a traumatic experience but doing so could be the first step to taking back control of your life and bringing an abuser to justice.
To find out how a solicitor can assist you in seeking compensation for sexual abuse in a care home, please get in touch on 0800 073 8804 today. Please continue reading this guide if you’d like to know how to make child care claims. This guide explains how you’re able to claim for care home abuse and what receiving compensation would involve.
Select a Section
- A Guide To Child Care Home Sexual Abuse Compensation Claims
- What Is Child Care Home Sexual Abuse?
- Types Of Abuse Suffered In Children’s Home
- Who Could Make A Children’s Home Sexual Abuse Claim?
- Children’s Care Home Institutions With Reports Or Convictions Of Sexual Abuse
- Child Abuse Claims Against Abusers
- Suing For Abuse In A Children’s Home
- Child Care Home Sexual Abuse Claim Time Limits
- Child Care Home Sexual Abuse Claims Calculator
- Children’s Care Sexual Abuse Special Damages
- No Win No Fee Child Care Home Sexual Abuse Compensation Claims
- Begin A Child Care Home Sexual Abuse Claim
- Help For Victims Of Child Care Home Abuse
Children are placed in care homes for a variety of reasons whether this is by the courts or other authorities in the UK. Whilst the majority of care homes are run exceptionally well, many minors are placed in unregulated care homes. The result is children are sometimes put at risk of being sexually abused by people in charge or who work in the homes. The result of such a traumatic experience can be long-lasting, leaving an abused child marked for life both physically and emotionally.
Our guide to child sexual abuse in care homes provides essential information on how to pursue compensation for the pain and suffering a victim was put through. We explain the different types of sexual abuse and who could be entitled to make a claim whether through the courts or through the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA).
We cover the time limits associated with sexual abuse claims, the sort of evidence required to support a claim and what can be included. Our guide explains the level of general damages and special damages you could be entitled to receive in a successful child sexual abuse in a care home claim. Finally, we explain how one of our No Win No Fee solicitors could assist you when making a claim against your abuser.
Care homes are supposed to provide children who are in need a safe environment to live in. If a child falls victim to sexual abuse during the time they are living in a care home, the effects can be devastating. There are many ways in which a child could be sexually abused, whether it is a one-off assault or many assaults that take place over a long period of time.
If you were the victim of child care home sexual abuse and you would like to speak to someone about your ordeal, there are numerous organisations and charities that offer help, advice and support. We have listed some of these at the end of our guide.
It goes without saying that many victims of sexual abuse that took place in a care home do not come forward until much later in life. Many children think they would not be believed if they tell anyone about what is happening to them, or they are afraid the abuse may get worse if they tell anyone about their experiences. However, even if a long time has passed, it does not mean you would not be entitled to seek compensation for child sexual abuse in a care home.
To find out more about how Legal Expert can help, please get in touch with one of our friendly advisers today.
As previously touched upon, children can be sexually abused in a care home or elsewhere in many ways. However, there are three sorts of sexual abuse as defined by the Crime Survey for England and Wales (CSEW) which are detailed below:
- Non-contact sexual abuse
- Assault by penetration which includes attempted assault by penetration, and other contact abuse of a sexual nature
Studies by the CSEW have established that contact sexual abuse is more prevalent than non-contact sexual abuse. It is estimated that in the year ending March 2019, 3% of adults between the ages of 18 and 74 had experienced some type of non-contact sexual abuse before they had turned 16 years of age, whereas 6% were the victims of contact sexual abuse. Other types of contact sexual abuse include the following:
- Being forced to touch someone else in an inappropriate sexual manner
If you were the victim of historical care home abuse, you may be able to claim compensation for the negative impact the incident or incidents have had on your life. Your compensation can accommodate both the physical and emotional abuse you’ve suffered.
If you were the victim of sexual abuse in a care home, or you are the guardian or parent of a survivor of sexual abuse, you know just how this type of assault can have lasting, lifelong effects. Receiving compensation for the harm the sexual abuse caused is just one small step in taking back control of your life. It means you receive the justice you quite rightly deserve for the harm you were caused.
Parents and guardians of a sexually abused child can claim compensation on behalf of the victim. If a loved one died due to child abuse, or they lack the mental capacity to make legal decisions, under UK child abuse law, a litigation friend can claim compensation on their behalf.
A person can be appointed a ‘litigation friend’ which would entitle them to make decisions when it comes to a court case if any of the following applies:
- An adult does not have the mental capacity to make decisions with or without a solicitor
- The claimant is a child
As a litigation friend, you may have to attend court if there is a hearing but you would not be permitted to act as the claimant’s solicitor.
If you would like more information regarding acting as a litigation friend for someone who was the victim of child care sexual abuse, please speak to one of our advisers today.
Unfortunately, there are too many reports of child sexual abuse in care homes, including those which are or were unregulated. Paedophile rings often take advantage of the situation and there have been many high profile cases of minors being sexually abused in children’s homes. The consequences for the victims are devastating.
Below is a list of children’s homes where abuse has taken place and been reported. Further below, we will provide two examples of child abuse for you to understand the types of incidents you may be able to claim compensation for.
Child Abuse At Beecholme Children’s Home
The next two sections provide insight into well-known child sexual abuse scandals to both show how such abuse can happen and why you may be able to claim compensation for it.
Between 1957 and 1974, abuse at Beecholme Children’s Home occurred. Former residents have stated that staff beat, starved, tortured and sexually abused them. The youngest child of such abuse was only three years old.
Residents are understandably wanting to take the abusers involved to court. However, the police operation and the number of people abused is so vast, that it could be a long time for this to happen. Sexual abuse such as this should never occur and, if you were the victim of abuse like this, child care claims could help you get the compensation you deserve.
Child Abuse At Lambeth Children’s Home
An inquiry has led to child abuse at Lambeth’s Children’s Home being uncovered. Staff and councillors are accused of presiding over a “culture of cover-up”, leading to 700 children in South London, across many care homes, suffering from horrid acts of cruelty and sexual abuse.
Lambeth Council, from the 1960s to 1990s, allowed abusers to infiltrate homes and the foster system itself. This reinforces one of the most awful aspects of care home abuse: the fact that not only are the victims children, but they are very vulnerable, reliant on the care of others and the system itself to function.
When it doesn’t function the way it needs to, as a result of corruption and systemic negligence, it can lead to devastating consequences.
The abuse at Beecholme Children’s Home and the child abuse at Lambeth Children’s Home are only two examples of incidents that should never have been allowed to happen. As you can see from the list above, it’s important to remember that you aren’t alone. There are unfortunately many people who suffered from sexual abuse as children, specifically through care home abuse.
To speak confidentially to a member of our team, please contact us at a time that works for you using the above details.
There is an option to sue your abuser for compensation for child sexual abuse in a care home through the courts. You also have the option to apply for the court to issue an order to prevent your abuser from assaulting you again in the future. If you are under the age of 18, an adult would need to act on your behalf which means they would be appointed your “litigation friend”.
However, because this type of case can be fraught with difficulties, it is advisable to seek legal advice before pursuing a sexual abuse claim against your abuser. This is where Legal Expert can assist by representing you on a No Win No Fee basis once it has been determined you have a strong sexual abuse claim against an abuser.
When it comes to claim time limits, this varies depending on the type of legal action you are pursuing and in some instances the deadline can be extended. Furthermore, while you may still be able to make child care claims for historical abuse, there are usually certain actions, such as reporting the incident to the police, that you need to do first. To find out more, please get in touch with one of our advisers today.t
If you were the victim of child sexual abuse in a care home, no matter how much time has elapsed, you could still claim compensation for the pain and suffering you were caused at the hands of your abuser.
A person who has been abused may be entitled to seek compensation should the following apply:
- They are an adult who was abused as a child
- They are still a minor/child
The sort of compensation you could be awarded could include the following:
- Loss of income if as a result of having been abused in a children’s home you suffer from psychological issues which mean you are unable to work
- The cost of private therapy or counselling
There are different options as to how you could seek compensation which are detailed below:
- You can sue your abuser directly, the children’s home or the organisation in control of the home, such as the local council, which failed to keep you safe from harm which is a duty of care they must uphold
- If your abuser has been successfully prosecuted, you could seek compensation through the civil courts
- You could seek compensation by making a claim through the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA)
For more advice on how to go about seeking compensation for sexual abuse in a children’s home, please contact one of our friendly advisers today.
As previously mentioned, there are various choices as to how you can make a sexual abuse claim whether against your abuser through the civil courts or you could opt to make an application for compensation through the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA). There are time limits which have to be respected whether you pursue a civil action or you make an application for compensation for sexual abuse through the CICA.
If you seek sexual abuse compensation through the civil courts the time limit is as follows:
- 3 years from the date you turned 18 years of age, as long as a litigation friend has not made a claim on your behalf already.
However, the Limitation Act 1980 allows a court discretionary powers to waive the 3-year time limit in exceptional circumstances. It is also worth noting the Limitation (Childhood Abuse) Scotland Act 2017 no longer applies the 3 year time limit for survivors residing in Scotland.
If you make an application to the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority, the time limit for doing so is as follows:
- 2 years from the date the sexual abuse was reported to the police
The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority can extend this time limit but only if the following applies to your sexual abuse in a children’s home case:
- There are exceptional circumstances that prevented you from making an application earlier, and
- The proof/evidence you provide in support of your application for sexual abuse compensation through the CICA Scheme means it can be established without any further extensive investigations by a ‘claims officer’
The CICA bases its decision on the ‘balance of probabilities’, unlike a criminal court which comes to a ruling on the basis of ‘beyond reasonable doubt’. The CICA does not have to wait for the outcome of a trial providing there is sufficient information for a decision to be made. As such, you do not need to wait for a court ruling before making an application for sexual abuse compensation through the CICA.
If you would like more information regarding the time limits associated with this type of claim, whether through the civil courts or through the CICA, please get in touch with an adviser today.
The level of compensation you could be awarded would depend on several things bearing in mind that each childhood sexual abuse in a care home is treated as unique. The table we have provided below offers a general idea of how much sexual abuse compensation you may be awarded for physical and psychological damage you were caused at the hands of your abuser. The amounts are based on the Judicial College Guidelines and are for ‘general damages’ only.
Injury Type and Severity Compensation awarded
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) - less severe £3,710 - £7,680
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) - moderate £7,680 - £21,730
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) - severe £56,180 - £94,470
Psychological damage - less severe £1,440 - £5,500
Psychological damage - moderate £5,500 - £17,900
Psychological damage - severe £51,460 - £108,620
How Much Could I Receive From The CICA?
If you’re looking to claim compensation for care home abuse, you will most likely be seeking compensation through the CICA. The CICA have a tariff with set compensation amounts for different types of injuries.
You can use the CICA to claim compensation for any criminal injury in England, Scotland and Wales. As part of a CICA claim, you would receive 100% compensation for the injury considered the most serious. You would then receive 30% for the second most serious injury and 15% for the third one.
Please see below a list of injuries regarding sexual abuse. Unlike the figures from the Judicial College above, these are set values that are assigned to each specific injury.
Description Compensation Amount Offence Injury Type
Non-penetrative, serious sexual physical act(s) that occurred under clothing. £2,000 Sexual offence - victim is a child Sexual assault
One or more of vagina, mouth or anal penile penetration. £11,000 Non-consensual penile penetration
Vagina, mouth or anal penile penetration causing serious internal bodily injury leading to severe, permanent mental illness. £44,000 Non-consensual penile penetration
A minor, non-penetrative sexual act(s) over clothing. £1,000 Sexual offence - victim, any age Sexual assault
Severe, non-penile penetrative or oral-genital act(s). £3,300 Sexual assault
Vagina, mouth or anal penile penetration causing internal injuries leading to permanent mental illness. £33,000 Non-consensual penile penetration
Sexual assault causing disabling and permanent mental illness. £27,000 Sexual assault
Vagina, mouth or anal penile penetration resulting in serious internal bodily injuries. £22,000 Non-consensual penile penetration
For a more accurate idea of how much sexual abuse compensation you could be entitled to, please speak to one of our advisers today.
As previously touched upon, you would be entitled to ‘general damages’ and ‘special damages’ in a successful sexual abuse in a care home claim. The sort of special damages you could include in your claim are detailed below:
- Medical expenses incurred which include prescription costs, private therapy, and counselling
- Travel expenses which include the cost of getting to the hospital or another medical facility whether you get there by car, train, bus, or taxi, and could include parking costs
- Loss of earnings should you not be able to work because the sexual abuse you were subjected to in a care home left you suffering from psychological issues
- Care costs should you require assistance due to the damage you were caused by an abuser
Claiming for losses such as the ones listed above in child care claims could increase the amount of compensation you receive. Please remember that financial evidence, such as receipts, invoices and bank statements, will be requested to prove the value of the losses you’re claiming for.
If you were the victim of sexual abuse in a care home, the effects it has on you can be devastating and having to relive such traumatic experiences are something you want to avoid. However, filing a sexual abuse claim can be the first step in taking back control of your life. You may also be worried about the cost of pursuing a claim against an abuser, which is understandable. However, you have the option to work with a solicitor who offers to represent you on a No Win No Fee basis.
This would mean entering into a Conditional Fee Agreement which is a contract that sets out what a No Win No Fee lawyer will undertake to do for you. The agreement, also referred to as a CFA, sets out the percentage you would have to pay the solicitor, but only if you win your case against the party responsible for the sexual abuse against you.
To find out more on how Legal Expert can assist you when making a care home sexual abuse claim, please get in touch with an adviser today. Once it has been determined you have a strong case against a sexual abuser, the next step would be to sign a Conditional Fee Agreement so a No Win No Fee lawyer can begin investigating your case.
To start a care home sexual abuse claim, please get in touch with a Legal Expert adviser today. Legal Expert offers an initial consultation that is free of charge and you are under no obligation to continue with a care home sexual abuse claim should you not want to.
You can also use our online claim form.
Alternatively, you can use our online chat line, or request a ‘call back’ and one of our friendly advisers will get back to you as soon as possible.
If you would like more information on how to report child abuse, please follow the link provided below:
If you were the victim of sexual abuse in a care home run by a local authority and you would like more information regarding this type of abuse, please click on the link below:
To find out more about the support offered by the NSPCC regarding historical abuse, please follow the link below:
For more in-depth information on how to go about claiming compensation for child abuse, please click on the link below:
If you or someone you know is the victim of child abuse in local authority care, and you would like to know more about claiming compensation, please follow the link provided below:
For more information on compensation for historical sexual abuse, please follow the link below:
Guide by Wood
Edited by Billing