The Government has announced its intention to abolish the right to claim compensation for what it calls “minor soft tissue injuries” arising from road traffic accidents. Although the Government states that this is all part of its campaign to prevent “fraudulent” claims and to attack the “compensation culture” it does not take into account that there has been a significant fall of over 70,000 whiplash claims over the last year since previous restrictions were put in place. In addition, the government plans to increase the current small claims limit for personal injury claims from £1,000 to £5,000 which will effectively prevent many thousands of genuinely injured claimants recovering their legal costs when bringing a claim.
Tim Cogan, Head of our Personal Injury Department and Fellow of the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers says as follows:
“These proposals are a callous attack on genuinely injured people who have a right to pursue a claim for compensation if they suffer from injuries arising from the negligence of others. These proposals will not penalise or prevent fraudulent claims as suggested. The only beneficiaries of these proposals will be the insurance companies as we have seen happen previously and those savings are not passed on to drivers in the form of reduced insurance premiums.
If you have been injured in a road traffic accident, accident at work or under other circumstances (as a result of the fault of someone else) it is important that you start your Claim as quickly as possible otherwise under these proposals your right to claim compensation may well be lost.”
A petition has been set up to force the government to have a proper debate on the small claims limit rather than simply implementing the changes without hearing what the effects would be on genuinely injured people who would be denied access to justice as a result – the link is below – https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/113810
While you might think this proposal doesn’t affect you at the moment if you or a member of your family or friend is unfortunate enough to have an accident in the future in which they sustain an injury and find as a result of these proposal they cant make a claim then your thoughts may be different.