Personal injury news roundup: 7 days ended 3 Dec 2013:
To be a personal injury solicitor in the UK is to face a seemingly unending stream of battles, but it seems when one victory is declared another fight begins.
First the good news: claims management companies, the bane of injury lawyers everywhere, have been on the decline steadily over the past year. In fact, as of September the ranks of CMCs, especially in the personal injury claims department, has gone down by some 38 per cent, mostly because the landscape changed so drastically back in April with the referral fee ban. Now that CMCs can’t gather up as many prospective claimants as they possibly can by tossing cash at insurance companies, they’ve found that their older methods of finding customers – unsolicited calls, emails and texts – aren’t producing enough revenue to actually support many of these firms.
CMCs were more or less awful in my opinion, primarily because they focused more on generating as much money as they possibly could for themselves instead of taking cases that would truly benefit their clients. CMCs made their money on sheer volume of claims, and they didn’t care who they hurt in the process, so no I’m not saddened to see them on the decline – especially since they gave injury lawyers such a bad name!
Speaking of solicitors being given a bad name, former solicitor and new Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State Shailesh Vara has declared open season on his former brethren by absolutely insisting that the small claims cap be increased to the point where it would knock out the right of legal representation by all too many claimants. Now I know you might not agree with me, but insurance companies are notorious for having a reputation for trying to get away with murder whilst crying about how they’re losing cash with every personal injury compensation claim, so this new push by Vara is not helping anyone but big insurance firms hold on to their profit margins. It’s totally unnecessary and it drives me absolutely mad that the interests of these massive firms are being held up as more important as the interests of the injured. I don’t understand where Vara’s head is when it comes to this whole thing, but I sincerely suspect it may just be securely lodged up his own arse on this one.