Whiplash and other soft tissue injuries may not seem like something you need to know about until you sustain one, but with law reforms coming into place at the end of May it’s important to read up.
These changes will affect the claims process for whiplash and other soft tissue injuries, and will also result in many people who are pursuing a claim no longer being able to recover legal costs from the responsible party so having to deal with it themselves or finding a reliable law firm or claims management company to act for them.
What are the changes and how do they affect personal injury claims?
The changes will mean that an injury compensation claim for a specific set of injuries (soft tissue/whiplash) can only recover legal costs if it valued at least £5000. Currently, the minimum value is £1000, so this is quite a significant increase for what are commonly ‘low value claims’, and will mean that there is not enough commercial value in these cases for many law firms. The changes are aiming to reduce claims fraud in this area but will act as a barrier for many injured parties who do not have knowledge or understanding of how to get through the system.
This reform will see many claims in this area handled by the claimant themselves or by a law firm who specialises in this arena like KLS who can assist you throughout. The Government is launching a claims portal where anyone can find information on the process, should they find themselves needing to pursue a claim.
It’s very important to note however, that for injuries sustained by those who are classed as ‘vulnerable road users’, the minimum value remains at £1000. A vulnerable road user is essentially anyone not in a vehicle; this includes cyclists, motorcyclists, pedestrians and horse riders.
This means that people within this category of road user can still expect to be able to instruct a solicitor and recover some of the cost of this as usual if they have an accident on the road and sustain injury.
If I sustain whiplash after May 2021 in a motor vehicle, what should I do?
There are still options available to you if you experience a road traffic accident after these changes come in. This will involve either submitting your claim yourself through the official injury portal, or enlisting the services of a law firm or accident management company.
Many accident management companies merely act as a broker/ agent and increase the level of deduction in your claim. KLS Law can take on the lower value claims below the new cap of £5000 because they specialise in PI Law and have the volume of instructions and the necessary knowledge and experience required to ensure your claim the maximum amount possible.
It is key that you get the maximum amount of compensation possible, urgent treatment if required and let someone else take the stress and work involved in pursuing a claim out of your hands.
Why hire accident claims assistance?
Any claims process is very complex and can in some instances take a long time. Hiring the services of an experienced professionals has many benefits, including:
- No win no fee. If your claim is declined, you do not pay our legal fees (terms and conditions apply).
- Saves you time. It makes sense to hire a company dedicated to this area of work, who can focus on it for you while you get on with other priorities.
- Ensures your best chance of success. The amount of compensation a claimant obtains can depend largely on the strength of the case they present, this is where legal knowledge and experience is invaluable.
- Fast access to medical exams and physiotherapy. Companies in this area will also be linked to rehabilitation centre and medical reporting companies. This can support your claim and is also important to progress quickly if your injury is causing pain or mobility issues. Organising this by yourself can often mean longer waiting periods.
KLS Law can refer you for accident claims assistance
At KLS Law we have two sister companies launching that can assist you in any personal injury claims after the reforms come in at the end of May 2021.
This removes all the stress of the process for you and very importantly also gives you access to same-day appointments for triage and physiotherapy.
Early intervention is often the most important factor when recovering from injury, and this also means you will have a professional medical report available at the earliest opportunity too, which will support your claim.