"If the proposed changes are enforced, structural reform of the legal sector will be imperative."
On 27 June 2018, the Civil Liability Bill underwent its third reading in the House of Lords, meaning it has now been handed over to the House of Commons for consideration. The Bill proposes changes to the law around whiplash claims and the personal injury discount rate.
Though it was expected that last week’s reading would focus on the discount rate, many Labour peers focussed instead on the impact the changes would have when considered in conjunction with proposed increases to the small claims limit. These suggested changes would mean that people making claims for road traffic accidents valued at less than £5,000 would not be entitled to free legal representation, as they are now.
What impact will the changes to the law around whiplash claims have on litigants?
Commenting on the latest development in the Bill’s passage, David Stothard, director of MAPS Medical Reporting, said: “It is vital that anyone making a whiplash claim has a medical report to corroborate their claim. As I’ve previously pointed out, under the current system, Litigants in Person (LiPs) do not have the necessary support to navigate the medico legal reporting field.
“If the proposed changes are enforced, structural reform of the legal sector will be imperative. The Bill, as it stands, has systemic errors and if passed, will put added strain on an already buckling charity sector, as LiPs turn to services like the Citizens Advice Bureau for legal assistance.
“Having provided more than 300,000 medico legal reports since 1999 means we understand the complexities of the process of medical reporting, from a solicitor-led perspective. It is vital that the intricacies of each unique case are fully understood and expressed in a medico legal report in order to have the evidence required to make a successful claim. I’m hoping that the House of Commons will take this into consideration when voting on the Civil Liability Bill.”
MAPS Medical Reporting provides quick access to reputable experts and high quality, specialist medical and medico legal reports to provide its customers with robust medical evidence to expedite both treatment services for the victim and the claims process. Contact us to find out more about how we can support you.