Government has no evidential justification on which to progress with PI reforms, says Thompsons

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Thompsons Solicitors has said that new data analysed by defendant firm Weightmans has shown that the Government has no evidential justification on which to progress with its PI reforms.

Motor insurance premiums have risen by £110, up 16% since this time last year, and yet the cost of pay outs to injured motorists and workers have all gone down. Analysis by Weightmans found that road traffic accidents and public liability claims dropped by 7% and 12% respectively, while workplace accident and disease claims decreased by 21% in the last year.

The Ministry of Justice has argued that its measures, which will remove injured people’s access to free or affordable, independent legal representation, are designed to tackle a “rampant compensation culture”. However, Thompsons believes that the figures from Weightmans clearly show that claims are already on the decline. It has said that far from putting consumers’ financial interests at heart, the Government’s planned reforms are set to gift £200 million a year in additional profit to insurance firms while at the same time robbing the Treasury and the NHS of an additional £150 million per year.

Tom Jones, head of policy at Thompsons Solicitors said: “These are the numbers the insurers don’t want us to see: the number of claims has gone down across the board, most dramatically in workplace accidents.

“The government has no evidential justification on which to progress with these reforms and its increasingly clear that consumers will lose out financially, there will be no real or sustained reduction in car insurance premiums and if they get injured they will – with no lawyer to represent them – be offered paltry compensation by insurers.

“It’s clear that the number of claims, whether they’re up or down, has no bearing on the cost of car insurance, and that the industry is set on increasing premiums no matter what. Meanwhile the Government is prepared to keep on feeding the fat cats in the industry and swallowing their claims of “crisis” without any challenge.”

He added that the figures proved that the insurers had been stirring up an epidemic which doesn’t exist.

“The end goal is exposed for what it really is. Cconsumers to pay more so that shareholders and CEOs continue to enjoy booming profits and dividends.”

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Marek Handzel

Marek Handzel is the editor of Claims Magazine. Marek welcomes articles, letters, or feedback from readers and can be reached by emailing marek.handzel@barkerbrooks.co.uk