Tim Willitts In Parents' Dependency CICA Award

Tim Willitts represented the parents of a man who tragically was murdered in 2009 in a claim for dependency brought in the Criminal Injuries Compensation Appeals Tribunal.

The applicants were the parents of a 21 year old man who was murdered in 2009.

Their application under the 2008 scheme comprised:

1. The standard amount of compensation for each parent - level 10 or £5,500 - for the bereavement award;
2. An award for funeral expenses - £2,255
3. Past and future financial dependency upon the deceased;
4. Past and future care/services dependency upon the deceased.

The first decision of CICA was to make awards under paragraphs 1. and 2. above, but not to make any award under 3. or 4. This decision was not changed after review.

The applicants appealed.

At the appeal hearing, the claim under paragraph 4. was abandoned because, on balance, the evidence did not support the making of an award under the scheme.

Under paragraph 3., awards were made to each parent in the sum of £35,000 under similar principles to those explained in Blamire v South Cumbria Health Authority [1993] PIQR Q1.

In making these awards, the appeal panel noted that there was sufficient evidence to show that, but for his death, the deceased would probably have completed his qualifications and enjoyed a successful career as a fully qualified gas and electrical engineer.

The panel also noted that the deceased and the applicants shared a common cultural heritage which meant that a probable ongoing financial dependency between the oldest son and his parents was established, despite the fact that in other cultures this may have been much less likely to arise.

The level of the award was affected by the deceased's likely future net earnings, the health and likely life expectancy of the applicants, and the likelihood that the deceased may well have gone on to marry and have children of his own in the future.

TOTAL AWARD: Applicant 1: £40,500 Applicant 2: £42,755

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