First4Lawyers in the media - March 2021

The first quarter of 2021 has seen a busy start to the media programme. In early January we issued a comment on the announcement that the whiplash reforms were going to, once again, be delayed by pushing back the launch of the new portal to May. The comment was covered by Solicitors Journal, Insurance Business, Legal Futures and Insurance Times.

In February we were able to share the news of our plans to launch our own law firm to support injured people who face being unrepresented in claims arising from road traffic accidents (RTAs) after the new whiplash reforms come into effect. The news was well received by both the industry and the media, with extensive coverage that included Law Society Gazette, Legal Futures, Law360, Insurance Claims, Insurance POST, The Legal Diarist and New Law Journal. We were also thrilled to announce that the new law firm will create a number of jobs in the local economy and this was reflected in the local media with Yorkshire Legal, Yorkshire Business Insider, Business Daily - Yorkshire and The Business Desk – Yorkshire all covering the news.

As February rolled on and we all waited for an announcement from the Ministry of Justice on what the new rules were likely to be, we submitted our monthly blog for Insurance Claims magazine looking at why marketing would play a crucial role for businesses as we move through what is likely to be an uncertain year.

The announcement regarding the rules was finally published at the end of February. We were encouraged to see that non-RTA claims will remain at £1,000 and that the small claims limit for children and protected parties has been removed entirely. However, the confirmation that all RTA claims worth less than £5,000 will continue to be processed through the portal, and claimants must state whether they expect to recover more or less than this, just highlighted that the fundamental problem of expecting the average consumer to represent themselves as a litigant in person remains unchanged, leaving vulnerable injured people to navigate a legal system they have no experience of or expertise in.

We issued a comment to the media detailing this, which was covered in Insurance Claims, Insurance Business and Simple News.

We hope that with the detail finally available, firms are given the support they need to prepare, and there now seems to be no reason why the Ministry of Justice can’t launch what will need to be a widespread consumer information plan in the hope that the public might be informed at some stage before the new system comes into effect.


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