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Personal injury reforms

The Government has announced the agenda for the coming parliamentary session. Whilst the legislative programme focused heavily on Brexit, there were a number of announcements which will impact directly on personal injury claims.

1.  Civil Liability Bill - The bill resurrects measures, including a ban on pre-medical offers and the introduction of a new tariff for whiplash claims of up to two years duration, to reform the personal injury claims process with a view to tackling the spiralling cost of whiplash claims. It is not yet clear whether the bill will be used as the legislative vehicle to bring about changes to how the discount rate is calculated and set once the outcome of the recent consultation on the discount rate is published.

2.  The Financial Guidance and Claims Bill - The bill amends the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 (“FSMA”) and bring regulatory oversight of Claims Management Companies within the remit of the Financial Conduct Authority.

3.  The Courts Bill - The bill is expected to introduce measures necessary to bring the Briggs on-line court into existence.  Whilst personal injury remains out of scope for the Briggs on-line court, this may well be revisited in light of the proposed increase in the small claims track limit. 

4.  The Automated and Electric Vehicles Bill - This bill will introduce an extension of compulsory motor insurance to cover the use of vehicles driving in autonomous mode.  Such a change will inevitably bring new complexities to personal injury claims (such as insurers facing injury claims from the "drivers" of their own cars) with additional skillsets required.

Should you wish to discuss these proposed bills in more detail, or would like assistance with any other matter, please do not hesitate to get in touch.