Changes afoot to the personal injury claims process
From April 2013 the Ministry of Justice changes the fee level that the legal representative is paid to represent some of the personal injury claim applicants, reducing it by practically fifty per cent. This will make it harder for smaller law firms to accept some cases and may lead to a more technology-driven, boiler plate processing of them. The ultimate loser is the injured victim, of course, who has suffered damage from a unique set of circumstances and who needs full consideration of their case. Solicitors are concerned that the fee has been so reduced it is insufficient to cover the time needed for the core service.
The wheels go round
Insurance companies are likely to favour the move, since ultimately they are looking to reduce the personal injury payouts to victims and help protect their own profits. Around 200,000 people are injured every year in road traffic accidents, so this issue affects a significant number of individuals. Particularly at risk are cyclists, who are extremely vulnerable in any accident situation. The popularity of cycling has increased in leaps and bounds in the last ten years, but so have traffic volumes, which mean that we have greater density of all kinds of vehicles on the road system. There isn’t the space to put cycle lanes everywhere.
It is unfortunate that decades of negative press have led to the personal injury legal process being cast in a bad light. Notions of ambulance chasers and fast bucks abound and of course, the reality is different. Any victim of a road traffic accident, may find the personal injury to them has a profound consequence on their ability to work and live their life as normal, either temporarily or permanently.
Many compensation providers in the personal injury sector have quick and direct access to an early assessment of the eligibility of a claim and how much it might be worth. Accident Advice Helpline has a 30-second online test, followed by a quick questionnaire to gather detail about the injury, from which their experts can advise on how to proceed.
Date Published: February 20, 2013
Author: David Brown