THE body that pays out to crime victims is not ready to compensate victims of historic sex abuse – but lawyers say Scottish survivors need answers.

Last week a woman known only as JT won a landmark legal ruling at the Court of Appeal in London, where three judges ruled a bar on damages for sex abuse as a child was a breach of her human rights.

The block was a result of the so-called “same roof” rule, which prevented payments to anyone who lived with their abuser before 1979.

Solicitors for JT, who was attacked by her stepfather between the ages of four and 17, said she had suffered “40 years of injustice” before the ruling.

The Glasgow-based Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA), which handles compensation claims for people from Scotland, England and Wales, said it is “aware” of the judgement but that no decisions will be made on relevant cases until the UK Government has considered the court ruling.

But Scottish legal firm Digby Brown Solicitors says “thousands” of people could be in line to benefit and has called on CICA for clarity.

Specialist abuse lawyer Kim Leslie said: “This judgement on the same roof rule will give hope to victims who for decades have felt let down by a system designed to help them.

“The ruling occurred in England but it simply has to have an impact in Scotland because the CICA is a UK-wide body so it’s inconceivable that different rules would apply to different parts of the UK. It’s headquarters are even in Glasgow.

“The CICA now needs to outline how it will help previously rejected victims and how it intends to deal with applications in the future.”

CICA, headed by interim chief executive Linda Brown, stated: “We are aware of the recent judgement in the case of JT relating to the same roof rule.

“We are not making any decisions on cases affected by the same roof rule until the implications of the judgement have been fully considered by the Ministry of Justice.”

JT’s abuse happened in the family home between 1968 and 1979. The man responsible was convicted and sentenced to 14 years imprisonment in November 2012.

Her claim for compensation was lodged one month later, but rejected under the rule that was designed to prevent beneficiaries from financial exploitation by their abusers.

However, the panel of three judges said the framework was a breach of human rights and ordered her claim to be re-opened at a special tribunal.

The heads of two of the UK’s largest support charities and civil liberties campaigners issued a joint statement after the decision.

Javed Khan, chief executive of Barnardo’s, Victim Support chief executive Diana Fawcett and Martha Spurrier of Liberty said: “This victory brings us another step closer to an overhaul of the unfair and illogical criminal injuries compensation scheme (CICS).

“The outdated same roof rule has prevented survivors of child sexual abuse from claiming compensation because their abuser was someone they lived with before 1979.

“Since 2015, the CICS has refused 180 applications.

“Today’s ruling paves the way for them to receive the justice they deserve, so they can move on with their lives.”

In the decision, Lord Justice Leggatt described the same roof rule as “arbitrary and unfair”, adding: “It is all the more unfair when the reason for the difference in treatment – that JT was living as a member of the same family as her abuser, whereas (the other victim) was not – is something over which JT had no control and is a feature of her situation which most people would surely regard as making her predicament and suffering even worse.”