Nuisance calls and texts about personal injury claims will reach ‘epidemic’ proportions under Government plans to reform ‘whiplash’ and other low value personal injury claims, lawyers have warned.
“There will be an explosion of calls and texts from claims management companies encouraging people to make personal injury claims, even if they haven’t been injured” warned Neil Sugarman, president of national not-for-profit group the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL). “If you think there are too many calls and texts already, brace yourself to be inundated”.
“The Government’s plan is to force vast numbers of injured people through the small claims court, which is designed for people to represent themselves. This is a business opportunity for claims management companies, which make the cold calls and texts, who will tout for claims just as they do for people who were mis-sold payment protection insurance,” Mr Sugarman explained.
“The fact is the Government should put its energy into banning cold calls and texts altogether. They are intrusive, tasteless and generate a damaging perception that personal injury claims are ‘easy money’.
“The reforms are completely unnecessary and unfair to vulnerable injured people who, without qualified legal help will be very much on the back foot, trying to fight their claims against the people who have injured them,” said Mr Sugarman. “They will have no idea of how much they need to claim for, let alone what medical evidence to gather.
“The small claims court is where you would go if you have a dispute with your landlord over a cleaning bill, or been sold a faulty dishwasher. It is an entirely inappropriate route for people who have been injured by someone else’s negligence.
“The Government is pointing its guns at the wrong people instead of putting an end to the real mischief - the scourge of calls and text messages. The Government has no problem with banning calls and texts about pension investments, so it could and should do the same for personal injury.”