First4Lawyers in the Media - December 2023

Good news stories have dominated our media activity this quarter, kicking off with a very special birthday.

First4Lawyers celebrated its 15th anniversary in October, with many of you joining us to mark the occasion at The Royal Armouries Museum in Leeds.

Our ‘knight to remember’ – a nod to theatre company Histrionics who performed a military reenactment for guests on the night – featured in Solicitors Journal, Yorkshire Legal News, The Yorkshire Press, Huddersfield Unlimited and Huddersfield Hub.

Managing director Qamar Anwar, who shared how in the first two years of trading he would personally speak to all potential claimants himself, said: “We have certainly come a long way since those early days, receiving more than one million enquiries.

“I am excited to see what the future holds. It has been an incredible journey so far and one that I hope will continue for many more years to come.”

We were thrilled to see our name in lights at this year’s Personal Injury Awards when First4InjuryClaims, part of the First4Lawyers’ group, was crowned ‘Claimant Team of the Year’ in front of an audience of industry peers.

There were many worthy winners on the night, but our success was all the more special as the law firm, set up in the wake of the whiplash reforms, has only been trading for two years.

The achievement was covered by Solicitors Journal, Yorkshire Legal News and Huddersfield Hub.

Andrew Wild, head of legal practice at First4InjuryClaims, is also becoming a go-to commentator on industry developments; his latest contribution being to an Insurance POST article on changes to medical reporting requirements for RTA claims submitted through the Official Injury Claim portal.

Commenting on the proposal to increase fees for expert medical reports, he told POST: “If the fees stay as they are in the current economic climate, the risk is that the quality of the report diminishes as experts do the appointments quicker, and secondly it becomes unprofitable for the agencies to conduct this work.

“Naturally this would have a knock-on impact to the claimant and ultimately their access to justice would be diminished.”

Elsewhere, Insurance Claims, Insurance POST and Solicitors Journal reported on the results of our ‘state of the market’ survey, which found that half of law firms have ditched low-value RTA claims as a result of the whiplash reforms.

Almost two-thirds of those that have stopped have wound down the work in the last 12 months after trying and failing to make it profitable, firms said. There is further turbulence ahead with a third admitting that they would have to “significantly change” their business model to cope with the recent extension of fixed recoverable costs.

For our annual survey we garnered the view of 113 law firms, many of whom have only survived by diversifying into other areas including data breach, financial mis-selling and housing disrepair.

Qamar Anwar said: “The PI sector has changed immeasurably over the last two years, but what is reassuring is the incredible resilience shown by the majority of law firms and their determination to survive and thrive, even in the face of so much upheaval and uncertainty.”

Our head of marketing, Andy Cullwick, continues to write a monthly blog for Insurance Claims, with the latest based on this year’s White Paper ‘From First Impressions to Follow-up Calls: Creating a Customer Journey.’

October’s instalment examined the findings of a mystery shopping exercise carried out for our White Paper, which revealed that as many as one in five new enquiries to law firms are going unanswered.

In November’s blog, he shared his insights on how to map out the perfect customer journey – including how to identify and smooth out any bumps in the road.

“According to a recent Salesforce report, 80% of customers now consider their experience with a company to be as important as its products,” he wrote.

“Good customer service should be a priority. Consumers hold more power now than ever and if you are not backing up your marketing efforts by focusing just as much on what happens when people do contact you then you will learn this the hard way.”


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