Get involved! Send your photos, video, news & views by texting EJ NEWS to 80360 or e-mail us
Whiplash claims fall by 10 per cent
6:10pm Monday 10th September 2012 in News
WHIPLASH claims have fallen by 10 per cent in Worcester over the last year.
Figures from the Government’s compensation recovery unit show that there were 1,405 whiplash claims in 2011/12 compared with 1,556 the year before.
Nationally, the number of claims has fallen by four per cent from 571,111 to 547,405.
Spiralling whiplash claims have been an area of concern for the Government’s transport committee, which met with insurers last Wednesday to discuss the matter.
This week the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL) said the latest figures should quash the myth that cracking down on whiplash claims is the way to tackle the rising cost of motor insurance.
However, Worcester’s MP Robin Walker , while welcoming the reduction, believes the matter is one that still needs thorough investigation.
“A small reduction is welcome, but I don’t think that it puts us back to the same level at all,” he said.
“I still think it is right that this is looked into to ensure that claims are legitimate and are not being escalated.
“It is part of the broader picture of trying to avoid the huge escalation in insurance costs over the past few years.”
He said that it was vital that settlements were not being made without claims being properly investigated – a call echoed by APIL president Karl Tonks.
“Before the Government embarks on a potentially damaging reform agenda, it’s critical that ministers have a clear picture about whiplash and that they recognise that most injured people are genuine and therefore have every right to expect proper access to justice when they need it,” he said.
“Of course there will always be people who try to cheat the system. That’s obviously wrong and we need a universal commitment to working to reduce fraud in whiplash cases.
“But it’s even more important to stand firm against any move to put barriers in the way of the majority of people who have genuine injuries and who need to make genuine claims.”