Hogan Lovells Successfully Campaigns for UK Victims of Overseas Terrorism
27 November 2012
LONDON, 27 NOVEMBER 2012 - UK citizens who have been victims of terrorism abroad will be entitled to compensation for the first time, the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) confirmed today.
Hogan Lovells' lawyers have spent the past seven years working alongside victims, their families and other campaigners to secure the introduction of the Victims of Overseas Terrorism Compensation (VOTC) Scheme, which provides financial support for British citizens injured by terrorist attacks outside of the UK.
The scheme, officially rolled out by the MoJ today, will provide financial support to those affected by incidents abroad in the past ten years - such as the terrorist attacks in Sharm-el-Sheikh in 2005 and Mumbai in 2008. This is a major step for victims as the current Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority Scheme only provides support if the attack occurred on British soil.
The firm worked on a pro bono basis with Trevor Lakin, whose son was killed in a terrorist attack in Sharm-el-Sheikh in 2005, to persuade the Government that the VOTC scheme should be brought into place. He said: "It has been a long and at times difficult campaign with disappointments along the way but we have always believed it was possible to change the situation for people in my position for the future. Without the support and skill of Hogan Lovells, and other parties, we would not have been able to persuade the British Government that such support was not only necessary but morally right as well.
"My son's death and all the other British victims' families will now feel that at long last something good has come from their loved ones death. I have also been contacted by other groups who have expressed that they wish that they had been able to afford such a strong and committed legal team. The fact that all this tremendous legal advice and support was given freely amazes them."
Hogan Lovells International Pro Bono Manager Yasmin Waljee said: "Before this scheme there was a discrepancy between the treatment of British victims of terrorism injured here and those injured outside the UK. We are pleased that the Government has closed this gap. The statutory scheme will provide much needed relief to British victims of future terrorist attacks as well as providing some compensation towards the loss suffered by those seriously injured in terrorist attacks since 2002."