Whiplash injuries account for 75% of all personal injury claims lodged in the UK, according to the ABI. Almost 1,200 claims are made for whiplash related injuries every single day!
It seems that we’re becoming the whiplash capital of Europe, with 40% more claims than any other European country. Unfortunately a large proportion of these claims are fraudulent and as a result, car insurance premiums have rocketed.
James Dalton from the ABI recently explained that the motor insurance industry can no longer cope with the vast number of claims. He went on to say that he doubted if people in the UK had the weakest necks in Europe and that whiplash is a fraudster’s dream because it is easy to fake and hard to diagnose.
The UK is ill-equipped to identify whiplash, it takes too long for genuine claimants to receive recompense when they lodge a personal injury claim and our personal injury compensation culture encourages fraud.
The ABI intends to devise an action plan which will forge an effective partnership between personal injury solicitors, doctors and insurers to crackdown on bogus claims.
Whiplash injuries have become synonymous with ambulance chasing no win no fee claims firms. These companies often persuade people who have had a very minor accident to file large personal injury claims.
Motor insurance companies are now asking car manufacturers to improve the design of seat and head restraints. Most whiplash injuries could be prevented if head restraints were positioned correctly in a vehicle. We could even reach a stage when this is taken into consideration by the courts. It may not be a bad idea to put the onus on the driver to protect himself and his passengers. If it reduces the cost of motor insurance, I’m sure many drivers would be happy to oblige.