Personal injury news roundup: 7 days ended 26 Aug 2014:
Nobody liked claims management companies, which is why they’re so glad there’s so few of them now – yet their exit has not stopped the injury claims train.
The personal injury compensation world was in a an uproar as early as just a year or so ago when new legislation went into place to effectively ban claims management companies. The regulations crippled CMCs by preventing things such as referral fees, and as a result there are 600 fewer CMCs in the UK than there were just 12 months ago. Most people thought this would end up stamping out things like spurious accident claims and the predations of so-called ‘ambulance chasing’ personal injury solicitors, and I’m sure it’s had a positive effect. No, really I’m sure there are places somewhere in the UK where there’s much less claims activity than there used to be.
Unfortunately one of those places is absolutely not anywhere near the West Midlands. In fact – and this little tidbit of information is going to blow you away – the West Midlands Police totted up something like £600,000 in legal costs over the last year. Yes, the same year that saw claims management companies practically driven from the UK. So what in the world is going on?
Well apparently it was mostly police staff being incredibly clumsy. Slips and trips, injuries from sitting on faulty chairs – whenever it seems there could possibly be something that went wrong last year it must have happened, because that’s a hefty sum indeed. I can only imagine that the entirety of the West Midlands Police go to work with the theme from the Benny Hill Show playing constantly, on repeat, as they go about their daily duties.
I’m sorry, does that sound a bit bitter? I don’t mean to be – I’m just honestly surprised at how high this personal injury bill is. I would have expected to see costs come down for everyone, what with the good news about CMCs falling by the wayside. I suppose it just goes to show you that claims management companies actually weren’t the problem when it came to spurious claims and inflated legal costs. Instead, it seems to be things such as the incredibly clumsy and accident-prone staff of the West Midlands Police!