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The Court of Appeal

By: Dave Howell - Updated: 20 Sep 2017 | comments*Discuss
 
Violent Crime Compensation Criminal

The court system has been developed so that everyone can have equal access to justice. When you go to court as a victim sometimes you might not get the verdict you were hoping for. This could happen for a wide range of reasons.

Under UK law an offender is innocent until proven guilty of an offence. If the offender is proven to be innocent they will be able to leave court and your case is over. However, if they are found guilty they will be sentenced. The sentence is set down in law. You may think that the offender should get a longer sentence, but at the initial trial, the judge can only hand down the sentence that is linked to the offence that has been committed.

However, the judge can also impose a number of additional conditions on the offender after they have been found guilty. These additional charges or conditions could give you the outcome of the case you had been hoping for. The judge can:

  • Give a community sentence to the offender that means they have to stay in close contact with the probation service.
  • Make a compensation order that forces the offender to pay you some form of compensation for your loss, damage or personal injury.
  • Hand down additional charges that they will be arrested for if they offend again.

Court of Appeal

If you feel that the court cases you are involved in hasn't come to a satisfying conclusion because you think the law itself isn't clear you can appeal the courts decision to the Criminal Cases Review Commission looks at alleged miscarriages of justice. The Commission is independent of the court systems and central government and is an option if you feel that your case has grounds for appeal.

Also, the person that has been convicted of a crime committed against you can also appeal their conviction. This goes before the Court of Appeal (Criminal Division). If this fails, the offender's last chance for an appeal is to go to the House of Lords if permission to do so is given. This rare and is usually only allowed when the appeal is to do with a point of law that requires clarification.

Getting Compensation

Victims of violent crime that is defined by the courts as a physical attack including sexual offences can apply for compensation. Also if you suffer from a recognised mental illness as a direct result of the assault, you can also claim compensation. The offender doesn't have to already be in custody for you to apply for compensation. Remember that you must have reported the violent crime against you to qualify for compensation. You must also apply for compensation within 2 years of the offence taking place.

To claim compensation in England, Wales and Scotland you must obtain an application form from the CICA (Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority). You can contact them by telephoning: 0800 358 3601, or by downloading the form from their website. Once you have sent in your application it will normally be processed with 12 months. The level of compensation will be sent to you by the CICA. If you accept the compensation that is offered, this will be paid to you within 28 days.

If you live in Northern Ireland you claim will be handled by the Compensation Agency Northern Ireland. Contact them on: 028 90 2499 44.

Coping After Court

Going to court can be a stressful and traumatic experience for many people. The stress that is often felt can be compounded if the court doesn't give the result that was hoped for. If this happens to you Victims Support can help you cope with the feelings of disappointment after court. You can contact their national centre by telephoning: 020 7735 9166.

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[Add a Comment]
Cherry - Your Question:
I have had my Decree Nisi pronounced under the Legal Help Scheme but Legal Aid has been refused in relation to Financial Remedy Proceedings. I am a victim of Domestic Violence and the solicitors had all the relevant information and MARAC letter which was needed. I had to leave my home and job (worked with husband) to escape the situation and I'm only receiving JSA to look after myself and 20 year old daughter (recently finished studying and now looking for work too). I'm at a loss what to do and my options seem like, I stay married and not get a Decree Absolute or finish the divorce without any financial settlement. I was in an abusive, violent, controlling marriage for 25 years and at the very least think I should be entitled to pensions or policies held by my husband? I've been to Citizens Advice and no-one seems to know if there are any other ways to help my situation

Our Response:
Unfortunately, we can only offer basic/generic advice. However, the link here may help answer your question.
CourtroomAdvice - 21-Sep-17 @ 2:49 PM
I have had my Decree Nisi pronounced under the Legal Help Scheme but Legal Aid has been refused in relation to Financial Remedy Proceedings.I am a victim of Domestic Violence and the solicitors had all the relevant information and MARAC letter which was needed.I had to leave my home and job (worked with husband) to escape the situation and I'm only receiving JSA to look after myself and 20 year old daughter (recently finished studying and now looking for work too). I'm at a loss what to do and my options seem like, I stay married and not get a Decree Absolute or finish the divorce without any financial settlement.I was in an abusive, violent, controlling marriage for 25 years and at the very least think I should be entitled to pensions or policies held by my husband? I've been to Citizens Advice and no-one seems to know if there are any other ways to help my situation
Cherry - 20-Sep-17 @ 6:34 PM
I was granted legal aid during criminal case after being found guilty was told have to pay £8000.00 for legal costs ????? How can this b I was not made aware that I would b liable for any costs else would have represented myself as simply donot have that money any ideas how I can resolve this matter
Blabla - 28-May-16 @ 6:39 AM
JACK - Your Question:
MY BROTHER IS NOT ALLOWING US TO VISIT MY MOTHERS.HE IS NOT ALLOWING OUR SIBLINGS TO VISIT HER. SINCE HE HAS CHANGED RELIGION AND MY MOTHER HAVE NOT, WE ARE QUIET WORRIED ABOUT HER.SHE IS 8O YEARS OLD. CAN WE TAKE HIM TO COURT? WHICH COURT PLEASEWE ARE DESPRATE TO VISIT OUR MUM (LAST VISITED 10 MONTHS AGO)

Our Response:
I am sorry to hear this. You don't say how old you are and whether your brother has guardianship or whether he has the right to make such decisions. Therefore it makes it difficult for me to answer your question.
CourtroomAdvice - 23-Nov-15 @ 12:42 PM
MY BROTHER IS NOT ALLOWING US TO VISIT MY MOTHERS. HE IS NOT ALLOWING OUR SIBLINGS TO VISIT HER.SINCE HE HAS CHANGED RELIGION AND MY MOTHER HAVE NOT, WE ARE QUIET WORRIED ABOUT HER. SHE IS 8O YEARS OLD. CAN WE TAKE HIM TO COURT? WHICH COURT PLEASE WE ARE DESPRATE TO VISIT OUR MUM (LAST VISITED 10 MONTHS AGO)
JACK - 22-Nov-15 @ 4:54 PM
Baritone Horn - Your Question:
My friend was badly manipulated by one of his business partners against the others. He raised a false invoice to access funds to purchase an investment for the company (not for personal gain). He has paid back the money in full, but the CPS is prosecuting for fraud. He has been informed that he must pay more than £1,400 for six months as his contribution to his legal aid, which he cannot afford. Is there any way to negotiate longer payment terms? If he is found guilty, he will be unable to work and will not be able to pay his instalments. But he is frightened of being unrepresented in court. What is the best thing to do?

Our Response:
He can self-litigate if he cannot afford fees. Please see the Bar Council - Guide to Representing Yourself in Court, link here. I'm afraid that is the only suggestion I have in the current circumstances, except from going to the Citizens Advice in order to get some free legal advice on his best route forward. Or negotiating directly with his legal representative to extend the payment terms.
CourtroomAdvice - 24-Sep-15 @ 12:36 PM
My friend was badly manipulated by one of his business partners against the others. He raised a false invoice to access funds to purchase an investment for the company (not for personal gain). He has paid back the money in full, but the CPS is prosecuting for fraud. He has been informed that he must pay more than £1,400 for six months as his contribution to his legal aid, which he cannot afford. Is there any way to negotiate longer payment terms? If he is found guilty, he will be unable to work and will not be able to pay his instalments. But he is frightened of being unrepresented in court. What is the best thing to do?
Baritone Horn - 23-Sep-15 @ 2:46 PM
@Stoneybloke - I have included a link relating to CPS costs here which I hope will help. It is a difficult thing to advise from at this end not having any knowledge of the case. I hope this helps.
CourtroomAdvice - 10-Feb-15 @ 2:50 PM
My wife pleaded guilty manslaughter due to diminished responsibility.She was sentenced to a Section 37 Hospital Order (no problem) and a Section 41 Restriction which we are appealing against.If we win our appeal against the S41, as expected, do we have to pay any costs?I can understand that we would have to pay if we lost the appeal but who pays if we win?My wife received a letter from the Court of Appeal asking a lot of questions about legal aid, most of which made no sense at all! I would appreciate any advice about this.
Stoneybloke - 6-Feb-15 @ 12:30 PM
@Queenie - you should speak to your solicitor if you feel uneasy about reading out your statement and he/she will be able to advise the best way forward. I have also included a link to what should happen on the day and how you can make things easier for yourself here. I hope this helps.
CourtroomAdvice - 5-Jan-15 @ 11:46 AM
I have been wrongly accused of stealing a mobile phone, i was fully searched in person, my bag, my clothes and my work cupboard...but still i must appear in the court of appeal having given my statement to the police...i have no criminal record and have never been to court before...i am scared and cant believe its gone this far.....can i have my husband read my statement in the court as my English reading is not great and have required help to put together the statement ... Ps i have no idea what to expect Thank you
Queenie - 29-Dec-14 @ 7:06 PM
@Sailor - I'm sorry to hear you are in this situation. You really need read our Separated Dads website link here which has plenty of pages to start you off on your quest for access and includes CMS and parental responsibility advice. We also have a Separated Dads Facebook page which has plenty of advice and postings from other dads in similar situations who are trying to battle their way through. Christmas is always a hard time for any separation. When Your Ex-Partner Denies You Access should help you if you follow the prodedure link here. Trying to gain access can become costly, and now more and more people are representing themselves in court (due to the withdrawal of legal aid) and there is a whole section on that which may help you in the future. Trying to come to an amicable agreement with your ex is generally the best way forward and things may eventually calm down, if you both take a rational approach. Wishing you the best of luck.
CourtroomAdvice - 17-Dec-14 @ 12:03 PM
I have very recentlty seperated with my partner and i feel like she is using our child as a control measure in our seperation. I also dont think she has named me on the birth certificate so leaves me without parental rights. As a first time father to a 6 week old baby i have been left heartbroken as i so want to be a part of my babys lifes and be a good role model and develop a strong bond and support my child in every way i can. For lots of small bitty reasons (petty arguements) we seperated and its gone sour and has left us unable to talk (amicably). Its Christmas time now and it hurts to be apart. I feel she is going to be increasingly difficult and i want advice on what my immediate steps should be. I want as much information as possible so i know my rights. Do i get in contact with Child maintenance early, will i get penalised later down the line if i pay her maintenance direct? How should i go about getting PR and also access to see him and overnight stays?
Sailor - 17-Dec-14 @ 8:58 AM
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