The National Redress Scheme was established by the Australian Government in response to one of the key recommendations of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.
The National Redress Scheme:
- acknowledges that many children were sexually abused in Australian institutions,
- holds institutions accountable for this abuse, and
- helps people who have experienced institutional child sexual abuse gain access to counselling and psychological services, a direct personal response, and a monetary payment.
The National Redress Scheme can offer:
- a monetary payment up to $150,000 – noting the average payment will be around $76,000 and past payments for the abuse will be taken into account.
- counselling and psychological support – noting access to these services will depend on where you live; if there are no scheme services where you live, you will receive a payment up to $5000.
- a direct personal response from the responsible institution/s, if you want that.
The Scheme began on 1 July 2018 and will remain open for 10 years. Applications can be made any time before 30 June 2027.
What is the payment for?
It is important to remember that a payment under the National Redress Scheme is not ‘common law’ damages. The redress payment will not include any amount for loss of income or pain and suffering. Its purpose is to recognise and acknowledge the impact of institutional child sexual abuse and related abuse on you.
Who can apply?
knowmore can help you find out if you are eligible to apply for redress.
Eligible survivors of institutional child sexual abuse can apply if the responsible institution has joined the scheme. You can check the list of participating institutions at www.nationalredress.gov.au or by calling the National Redress Line on 1800 737 377.
All of the States and Territories and key non-government institutions such as the Catholic, Anglican and Uniting Churches, Salvation Army, YMCA and Scouts have agreed to join the scheme.
It is estimated that nearly 90% of survivors of child sexual abuse in Australian institutions will eventually be eligible to make a claim for redress.
- Not all survivors will be eligible to make a claim. In some cases the Operator of the Redress Scheme can exercise a discretion about someone’s eligibility.
- Survivors who have received redress under other schemes or through past actions or claims can still apply to this scheme; however, prior relevant payments will be taken into account.
- Even if a survivor was sexually abused as a child in multiple institutions, the survivor will only be able to make one application for redress. There are limited options to review any decision that is made about a person’s redress.
- When a monetary payment is accepted, the survivor will also be asked to sign a Statutory Release. This means that a survivor will not be able to bring or continue any civil proceedings against the institution or its officials in relation to that abuse.
For all of these reasons, it is very important that survivors seek legal advice about their options and whether a redress claim is the most appropriate option for them.
Read more about How we can help.
People engaging with the National Redress Scheme (NRS) can access a range of free services including counselling, case management, advice and support. For more information visit the NRS website.
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