If you’ve ever been in an accident, you’ll know how easy it can be to suffer from whiplash as a result. No matter how badly you’ve suffered, the government’s recent changes to the claims process may have an affect on your insurance. Whether you’re making a claim or have had a claim made against you, here’s everything you need to know.
What does the reform entail?
The changes to whiplash reforms that can be found in the Civil Liability Act 2018, we’re put into effect from 31st May 2021. The government have essentially made changes to the claims process for low value accidents related to whiplash claims. This means that you’ll now have the opportunity to settle any small claims such as these online, without the need to go to court or needing to get legal representation. You will find though, that whiplash cases can now no longer be settled without medical evidence.
There’s also been a change to the small claims (SCT) limit. Before the 31st May 2021, the limit for accidents and other injury claims of this nature was £1,000. Now, for any accidents that occur after this date, the new limit is £5,000.
Changes to insurance
Because of the whiplash reform, drivers could save up to £35 a year on their car insurance, according to the Ministry of Justice. In 2019/20, there were a staggering 550,000 whiplash claims, a figure that the Ministry of Justice called “unacceptably high”. However, they now believe that because of the reforms, drivers will be able to have their premiums cut by insurance providers, making savings for millions across the country.
It’s also likely that claims will reduce because of the need now for medical evidence. Without this, your case is unlikely to be successful. The hopes are that by putting measures such as these in place, it will ensure only genuine cases are being considered for compensation.
The new measures being put in place and documents being required are:
- A signed statement of truth from the defendant driver including a detailed account of what happened
- Any dashcam, video or CCTV footage that can be obtained
- Photos of the accident scene and/or damage
- Any independent witness statements or details for witnesses
- Details of any emergency services that attended
- Tracker data if available
- Any other relevant documents
Those making a claim will only have 30 working days to get this information before automatic admission of liability is made!