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Grayling: No change on personal injury claims limit

The Ministry of Justice has confirmed that the small claims limit for personal injury matters will stay at £1,000.

In the ministry’s response to a consultation on arrangements relating to whiplash injuries in England and Wales, published on 23 October, Justice Secretary Chris Grayling said that there were “good arguments” for increasing the small claims limit for all road traffic accidents to £5,000.

But he said that while this would boost incentives to challenge “fraudulent or exaggerated insurance claims…now may not be the right time to raise the small claims limit because of the risks that it may deter access to justice for the genuinely injured.”

Mr Grayling said that raising the limit might also encourage the growth of “disreputable” claims firms.

However, although while there will be no change to the limit at present, the government’s response document said that it would “keep this issue under consideration for implementation when appropriate”.

Mr Grayling also announced that whiplash cheats, whose bogus compensation claims have helped to force up average motor insurance premiums, would be targeted by new independent medical panels, designed to ensure that only evidence from accredited professionals would be considered.

He said that the panels, to be introduced from 2014, would mean that “people can no longer profit from exaggerated or fraudulent compensation claims but victims with genuine cases can still get the help they deserve.”