Reforms that are likely to have a dramatic – and possibly catastrophic – effect on the personal injury sector have been delayed a year, the government has confirmed. The Ministry of Justice said the changes introduced through the Civil Liability Bill will ‘fundamentally transform’ how low-value whiplash claims are handled, and it needed to address concerns about access to justice.
In a response to the justice select committee’s report on the bill, the government says its revised timetable is to be ready for large-scale testing by October 2019 with the view to implementing the measures in full in April 2020. Previously the government has always worked on the basis of implementing changes in April 2019.
The reforms involve a tariff for fixed and much-reduced damages for RTA claims, alongside a new £5,000 small claims limit. Both are likely to result in litigants running their own claims, and the government must create an online system that enables them to handle them without representation.

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