Is there really a “compensation culture” in the UK?
The Personal Injury market has changed in many ways over recent years. Several reforms in legislation have meant many changes for both law firms and clients, and have also had an impact in the way in which the market is perceived.
We have been helping clients claim compensation for over 25 years
The Personal Injury market has changed in many ways over recent years. Several reforms in legislation have meant many changes for both law firms and clients, and have also had an impact in the way in which the market is perceived. In particular, whether there really is a compensation culture in the UK. A report released by the Legal Services Board has looked at these reforms and the apparent impact this has had on clients’ access to justice and compensation claims as a whole.
One of the big changes identified over the last ten years was the increase in referral fees for personal injury claims. Basically many claims companies and insurers would sell on clients’ claims and receive a referral fee in return. Many insurance companies were also making additional fees through car hire arrangements as well helping to increase their profits overall. This definitely had a big impact on the market which saw an increase in road accident claims but not in any other type of injury claim. In effect insurers and claims companies were actively generating leads for motor compensation claims.
The Legal Services Board found that motor injury claims were roughly stable between 2001 and 2005, but then more than doubled between 2005 and 2013. However, there was no comparable increase in the number of claims for other types of personal injury. In fact, there was a drop in the number of employer liability personal injury claims, from a peak of 291,000 in 2004 to 91,000 in 2013. Public liability claims have not increased notably through this time; there were 96,000 cases in 2001 compared to 103,000 in 2013.
There has been a consistent view, particularly by the media that there is a “compensation culture”. However general personal injury claims are not increasing, despite increased advertising and more awareness of a person’s right to make a claim. Although there was an increase in road traffic accident claims, this was fuelled by both claims companies and insurers who received lucrative referral fees for selling on motor claims and therefore were actively encouraging people to make a claim.
It is also thought that this may have increased the number of fraudulent claims put forward too. Recent reforms this year mean that referral fees are now banned and therefore it is expected that the number of road accident claims will reduce.
At Freeclaim Solicitors, we have never bought road accident claims or personal injury leads from insurance companies. We believe that clients should always speak directly to a personal injury solicitor who can demonstrate specialist expertise. We have been helping clients claim compensation for over 25 years’, so have seen the effects of all of these changes first hand. We are completely independent solicitors and therefore we can always act in our clients’ best interests.
At Freeclaim, we believe it is important for everyone to have access to justice following an accident and we fight tirelessly to gain the compensation our clients deserve. If you have been injured, in a road accident, an accident at work, a slip, trip, or fall, we can help. To find out more about what we do and to see our client testimonials, visit our website, http://www.freeclaim.co.uk.
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