Live updates

Whiplash victim defends claims

Whiplash victim Gavin Redman said: "I've been injured three times. If you've been involved in an accident, it's not your fault, why should you be made to suffer. It's just not fair.

"Each time I've been injured I've been to see a consultant who's gone through quite a rigorous examination of me, told me to explain all my symptoms. He's then made the diagnosis of how long it's going to take me to get better, nobody else."

'Government wants to crack down on whiplash culture'

James Dalton, head of Motor and Liability at the Association of British Insurers said: "Half a million whiplash claims a year. That's about 1,500-1,600 claims a day.

"The reality is that that is driving up people's car insurance premiums and the government is today announcing a set of proposals, that it is putting out to consultation to really crack down on the whiplash culture."

Advertisement

Doctors will need 'licence' to approve whiplash claim

An independent medical panel will be set up to accredit doctors who wish to act as insurance examiners.

Medics will need a licence to approve whiplash, Grayling will say Credit: David Jones/PA Wire

The system is designed to prevent doctors being faced with unfair pressure to support fraudulent claims.

The threshold for small claims courts is being raised from £1,000 to £5,000, so that they can handle all but the most serious cases.

It will also include banning "referral fees" where companies can profit from selling on someone's personal injury claim and stopping claims management companies from offering money or goods as an inducement to make a claim through them.

They will include rebalancing no-win no-fee deals so losing defendants will no longer have to pay a success fee or legal insurance premium to the claimant's lawyer.

Today's consultation complements law changes which will come into effect in April 2013.

New curb on whiplash fraud 'will help genuine claimants'

We are pleased that the Government recognises that tough action is needed to protect honest motorists from the UK's whiplash epidemic. For too long, whiplash has been seen as the "fraud of choice".

More effective diagnosis of whiplash will help genuine claimants get paid out quickly and reduce the scope for fraud, so helping to ensure that honest motorists do not end up footing the bill for the cheats through higher insurance premiums.

– James Dalton, head of motor and liability at the Association of British Insurers

Whiplash claims 'add £90 a year' to car insurance bill

Whiplash injury claims cost insurers more than £2 billion last year - adding around £90 to the cost of a typical car insurance policy, the AA has revealed.

The AA said that, over the past two years, claims for whiplash injury contributed to the biggest car insurance premium increases ever recorded.

There has been a reported 60% rise in personal injury claims related to road accidents since 2006, despite vehicles becoming safer.

And a 20% reduction in the number of reported accidents over the same period.

Justice Secretary: 'Whiplash epidemic must be stopped'

For too long honest drivers have been bearing the price of a system that has been open to abuse and it is time for that to change.

We are proposing action to support effective whiplash diagnosis by medical experts and to simplify procedures which will help bring speculative or fraudulent claims before a judge - so genuine claims can still be settled but fraudsters are left in no doubt there will be no more easy paydays.

– Justice Secretary Chris Grayling

Advertisement

Plans to cut whiplash injury claims unveiled

Justice Secretary Chris Grayling Credit: David Jones/PA Archive

The Government will unveil plans to reduce the huge number of whiplash claims which have been pushing up insurance premiums.

Justice Secretary Chris Grayling will today launch a consultation on creating new independent medical panels to improve diagnosis of whiplash injuries.

This aims to ensure that genuine claims can still go ahead, but exaggerated, misrepresented or fraudulent claims are robustly challenged.

It will also consult on options to allow more whiplash cases to be challenged in the small claims court and to change the current position where it can be cheaper for insurance companies to accept questionable claims than to contest them.

Advertisement

Today's top stories