Supporting whiplash reforms

An overwhelming majority of Brits are calling on the Government to honour its commitment to slash motor premiums by reforming whiplash compensation laws. The latest edition of our “Road to Reform” report – and the issues it shines a light on are as pertinent today as they were in the first report, published in 2013.

Back then, we argued that the compensation system did not work in the interests of honest customers and was hindered by costs from middlemen, who did not add value to customers’ claims, but only added costs to everyone’s premiums. That is still the case.

The reforms, announced by the former Chancellor in last November’s Autumn Statement, would end cash compensation for minor, short-term injuries and limit lawyers – and their fees – to cases where their expertise is needed.

If implemented as envisaged, we expect the ‘typical’ benefit to motorists would be a £43 cut to motor premiums, and we’re committed to pass on 100% of the savings to our customers.

 

“Our research shows that the British public is sick and tired of the toxic compensation culture that has increased premiums, fraud and nuisance calls.  The Government has an historic opportunity to make a significant change that will cut the cost of motor insurance - and it is clear that the British public is fully behind the reforms.

It’s time to stop the nuisance calls, stop crash for cash, stop spiraling claims that push up premiums, and stop the profiteering at the injured party’s expense. It’s time to end this compensation merry-go-round and cut the cost of motor insurance for us all.”

Rob Townend, Claims Director, Aviva UK General Insurance

 

Compensation culture

The vast majority of Brits believe that Britain has a compensation culture, with almost nine-in-ten saying that too many people see compensation as an easy way to make cash.

The easy access to motor injury compensation has seen the rise of ‘crash for cash’, where organised fraudsters cause accidents on the UK’s roads that put innocent motorists at risk of real harm. We have identified over 4,000 motor injury claims as being linked to known fraud rings, and have seen the number of organised scams almost double (up by 98%) between 2011 - 2015.

 

Care, not cash and cutting legal costs

We believe this can be halted by treating minor injuries with care, not cash – making sure claimants get the care and rehabilitation they need, but not the cash payout - known as "general damages" - for pain and suffering.  This will stop fraudsters inducing motor accidents, and put an end to the claims management companies and lawyers who aggressively chase injury claims through nuisance calls. The Government’s other proposed reform, removing lawyers from straight-forward, minor injury claims, will also curb excessive legal costs.

 

Read the latest edition of our Road to Reform - Driving a better deal for motor insurance customers’ report, looking at this ongoing issue for our industry and the challenge ahead.

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