COMPENSATION claims will be concentrated on those who suffer serious injury under Government plans.
And the shake-up will further see rapists and murderers no longer able to claim compensation for being victims of crime under the taxpayer-funded Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme (CICS).
In the last year alone, more than 3,000 prisoners and ex-prisoners made claims to the scheme.
The Justice Secretary Kenneth Clarke said some £57m has been paid to claimants who were convicted criminals over the last decade and the “scheme in its current form is not sustainable”.
The victims’ surcharge will also be extended.
Under present law, only criminals who are fined as part of their punishment are forced to pay the charge which currently sits at a £15 flat rate.
But if the proposals are put through, the charge would be paid by anyone convicted of a criminal offence and could range from the present rate to £120, depending on the severity of the crime.
If offenders cannot pay the cash, it could be taken from their benefits or from money earned by working prisoners.
Current levels of compensation are based on 25 bands, ranging from band one, which attracts a payout of £1,000, to the most serious band, 25, at £250,000.
Under the proposals, the lower five tariffs would be scrapped, payouts for bands six to 12 would be reduced, and the top 13 bands – the most serious – will remain unchanged.