Case Summary


Citation 1981  QBD  Unreported 
Decision Date 21/12/1982
Scheme Pre-tariff Schemes
Paragraph Number 12, 13, 21, 22
Keywords Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme 1969- Paragraphs 12 & 13, 21 and 22 – Compensation – Procedure – Refusal of initial award – Vesting of awards – Death of Applicant - Oral hearing
Headnote Summary of decision There was no right to any particular award of compensation once an applicant had rejected an offer made by the Criminal Injuries Compensation Board and asked for an oral hearing. However, where an interim payment had been offered and specifically been accepted on the applicant’s behalf this did vest and ought to be paid. Facts The applicant (‘E’) was injured by a criminal assault on 13 June 1978 as a result of which he was semi-conscious thereafter until his death on 8 October 1979. On 16 November 1978 an application was made to the Board, under the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme 1969, (‘the Scheme’). On 29 May 1979 E was offered an award of compensation reduced by one-third for his conduct and an interim payment of £500. His solicitors rejected the prospect of an award reduced by one third, but purported to accept the £500 interim payment. Further, they asked for an oral hearing, however before that could take place E died. The hearing nonetheless went ahead at his solicitors’ request however the Board, hearing the matter de novo, decided that the application failed. They found that as the applicant had died having rejected the earlier offer the claim could not continue (although the widow potentially had a dependency claim). The case was appealed by the Applicant’s widow to the High Court where Mr Justice McNeill ordered that the £500 interim payment should be paid to the Applicant’s estate. That decision was appealed by the Board in turn to the Court of Appeal. Held, allowing the appeal in part (1) The hearing before the Board is a re-hearing. (2) However, the Board, by enabling the initial decision by the single member to be made in compartments, left it open to the applicant “to appeal in one of the compartments into which the Board had chosen to divide their determination”. (3) Therefore the interim award which the Applicant’s solicitors had accepted, had vested and ought to be paid. (4) The Board’s offer to pay an award reduced by one third which had been rejected had not vested in the Applicant by reason of that rejection. (see R v. The Criminal Injuries Compensation Board ex parte Tong (1976) 1 WLR 1237; (5) The personal representative of the deceased Applicant was entitled to seek relief in respect of the interim award, however, the wording of the Scheme precluded an order to continue the existing proceedings in the name of the personal representative. She had her own dependency claim which she could bring in due course. Parts of scheme and other legislation referred to in judgment 1969 Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme, paragraphs 12, 13, 21 & 22 Cases referred to in judgment R v. The Criminal Injuries Compensation Board ex parte Lain (1967) 2 Queen’s Bench 864; R v. The Criminal Injuries Compensation Board ex parte Tong (1976) 1 WLR 1237; Representation Mr Michael Wright QC and Mr Simon Brown (instructed by the Treasury Solicitor) for the Appellants Mr R Thayne Forbes (instructed by Messrs W.P.Davies & Son) for the Respondent
Download R_v_CICB_ex_parte_Earls.pdf