Whiplash Reforms to Result in Fall in Car Insurance Premiums

Reforms to the whiplash claims process are expected to result in a fall in car insurance premiums. According to the Ministry of Justice, drivers could potentially save up to £35 a year on their car insurance as a consequence of the major reforms which came into effect on the 31st of May.

The changes have been brought in with the aim of reducing the number of whiplash claims, which are seen as “unacceptably high”. There were more than 550,000 claims made in 2019/20, for example.

What are the key changes?  

The reforms have introduced a ban on settling a whiplash claim without medical evidence. This should reduce the risk of embellished or fraudulent claims, which can be harmful to genuine claimants.

A new online claims portal, ‘Official Injury Claim’, has also been launched for any road traffic personal injury claim valued under £5,000 – rising to “a total of £10,000 for all losses related to the accident (such as loss of earnings and damage to your car and property)”. Victims will be able to settle claims without lawyers or having to go to court. It is anticipated that most road traffic claims will now go through the portal.

The portal is for those who have been injured in a road traffic accident on or after the 31st of May 2021.

Another change is that there will be a fixed tariff for the compensation for whiplash injuries, setting out the amount that can be claimed for an injury that lasts up to two years.

Lord Chancellor, Robert Buckland QC MP, said of the reforms, "For too long the system for making whiplash claims has been open to abuse by individuals looking for an easy payday – with ordinary motorists paying the price. Our changes will put an end to this greedy opportunism and ultimately see savings put back into the pockets of the country's drivers."

About the author

Lisa joined RWA in 2014 as an e-Learning Assistant and now heads up RWA’s Design and Content Team. Her role as Head of Content and Communications involves managing content creation and curation on the Aviva Development Zone platform and serving as editor of RWA Insight.

Lisa has diverse creative and technical writing experience. She holds a first class honours degree in English and Creative Writing from Swansea University and graduated from Cardiff Metropolitan University with a Distinction in Creative Writing in 2016.

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