The Whiplash reforms form part of the Civil Liability Act 2018 which are a package of measures for England and Wales designed to reduce insurance costs for ordinary motorists and address the continuing high number of whiplash claims. These will apply from 31 May 2021. A new online portal has been developed for managing low value road traffic accident claims, the intention being that the new portal is suitable for individuals to manage their own claims rather than rely on solicitors.
Historically the limit for the limit to bringing low value claims to court was £1,000. The reforms will increase this to £5,000 but it means that if you hire a legal representative to make a bodily injury claim below £5,000 their legal fees will not be recoverable, as they have been until 31st May 2021. Claims for minors, vulnerable road users and protected parties will be exempt.
The reforms will also introduce new tariffs of fixed compensation for whiplash type injuries with a recovery period of up to 2 years. The tariffs are on a sliding scale and the legislation introduces a ban on offering to settle or settling claims without obtaining appropriate medical evident for injuries falling within the definition of whiplash.
The Government has given a firm commitment that the savings brought about from these reforms will be passed on to consumers through lower premiums.