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A Necessary System
Member Name: wastingtime
Advantages: Money for those who really need it
Disadvantages: Damn Spongers
I felt I should join in the debate which I feel that cannot be won, from the outset I would like to say that I am pro compensation due to a recent incident I was involved in, however, I like many people just get annoyed about how some folks abuse the system just like people have abused other financial rewarding systems for decades - benefit fraud, child support and the dole for instance.
I would like first of all if I may to run down my own experience and show what I believe to be a positive side of the compensation authority. I was in a nightclub in my home town of Chester about 6 weeks ago, having just arrived I was waiting for my friend to get the round in while I stood a little bit back from the bar. At which point I noticed another friend of mine on the dance floor, a split second later I see him get punched in an unprovoked attack. This first blow knocks his glasses clean from his face and he is then punched again; I run over to the attacker to restrain him, and grab his arms from behind holding him in a bear hug and waiting for the bouncers to come over, the attacker though then goes nothing short of crazy, he turns inside my bear hug, and now facing me bites the top inch of my ear off.
He was arrested at the scene and I was taken to A&E, this was on a Thursday night, I waited till Saturday afternoon till I had my ear sown up, due to the fact that the rest of the ear was never found I am still walking around like an abused teddy bear. I have had to take lots of time off due to doctors appoints, hospital visits and of course to see the Police officer dealing with the case. Now it was only recently that I was told about the CICA, The Criminal Injury Compensation Authority, and it has come as a huge relief.
I felt it would be somewhat of a pointless act to sue the attacker for compensation for my injuries, as the amount of money I think I am due for such an injury he just wouldnít be able to pay and Iíd end up getting a £1 every week for life or something silly. Now the good thing about the CICA (www.cica.gov.uk) is how much detail they go into. They stress everything that is required for you to file a request for compensation and then using their template scheme they can tell you exactly how much an injury is worth. Now I know that for my injury I am looking at £4400, and whatever costs they decide to award me for my time off work and to be honest the mental stress I have had to go through which is probably not appropriate to put on here.
And that is why I do not think this debate can ever be won, on one hand you have people such as myself and some other reviews I have read on here who do seem to be honest cases where money is either much needed for the surgery or physio they have had to go through, or perhaps time taken time off work. And there will always be genuine people who arenít looking to rip the system off, for instance with my case, all I would have needed to have done is gone to the doctors a week later and press a case of depression, get signed off on SSP (which is also a joke and I will get to in due time) and hey presto a few months later you have a big cheque for your depression and more time off work.
Before I continue actually I would like to make the point about how crap Statutory Sick Pay is, I am only 21 but I have been in work since 16, and in my short five years in the world of work I have paid stupid amounts of cash to tax and National Insurance, and not once have I ever claimed anything back, I have never signed on to the dole, I have never gone on SSP, but all of a sudden when I do I receive a massive £11 a day. What are you meant to do with £11 a day!? So for the initial twelve days I was off that was £132. Over half a months wages and I receive an amount of money that I would usually earn in two days. Now do not get me wrong I do not believe I should receive a lot of money due to how much money I earn or something similar, but perhaps a system a little bit more in proportion to how much you have paid in and perhaps how much you have claimed, all I can say is the system needs a drastic overhaul.
Now let me tell you about my local public house in Chester, and more importantly the patrons that frequent the place. It is a Sam Smiths pub, and to anyone that knows their beer it means it is the cheapest pub around, a pint of lager will cost you £1.56 and bitter is something like £1.40, so as you can expect it brings in an interesting clientele, now most of the people that drink in there are ageing men who really donít appear to have done much with their lives, but they are harmless so I drink with them none the less. But let me tell you if I could shop them all to the authorities I would, half of them are in the pub for 12 and are totally drunk by the time I have arrived and I have no doubt that every single one of them is on benefits of some kind, how is it you can have a man who doesnít have two brains in his head but knows every single loop hole in a system to claim benefits, I will never understand.
I am willing to bet if you looked at how much money is paid out to those on benefits, week in and week out for decades and compare it to people who milk the system to earn themselves a few grand in compensation after a car accident or a fall at work (you have all seen the adverts) then it shows the fact that we have managed to produce generations of people who do not want to work and can keep finding ways of milking the system the amount of money paid out would be on a completely different scale.
For instance for me to claim my money in compensation I had to fill out a 14 page booklet and send it Glasgow, it is then processed, the police officer dealing with the matter is contacted to confirm my injuries as is my doctor. It is a lot more complicated procedure, and then you compare it to a guy that can walk into the dole office, sign up for jobseekers, earn £160 a month and is no doubt working cash in hand somewhere else, and all he has to do is send a CV to an employee he knows he has no chance of working for. Mix that with any other benefits he can claim for having children, perhaps a disability he has that actually does him no harm, and all of a sudden your man is earning a fortune off the state.
My conclusion to this argument is that of course we have people milking our compensation culture, but the amounts offered are not silly like America, and if we can keep the amounts reasonable, and perhaps eradicate the spongers on the system then perhaps we can make what I believe a good system actually work. Rant over.
Summary: A good system that needs to work on it