The Pre-Action Protocol (PAP) and the Practice Direction (PD) for the whiplash and small claims reforms were released on Friday, just a day after the whiplash damages tariff was finalised. It is important to note that the new PAP – The RTA Small Claims PAP, available here – covers all road traffic injury claims which fall under the new small track limit of £5,000 (for the injury) and are subject to an overall maximum claim value of £10,000. It will be mandatory for qualifying claims to follow the new PAP procedures, which will be brought to operational life via the www.officialinjuryclaim.org.uk (OIC) Portal.
We set out some early thoughts on the new RTA SCP below. We’ll be developing these views and presenting them in online briefings to be arranged over the new few weeks – please get in touch if you would like to be involved.
The Association of Personal Injury Lawyers’ (APIL) annual conference ends today, 18 April 2018, with what looks to be a timely “Law Reform and litigation update” session covering the discount rate, clinical negligence, small claims, court reforms and gastric illness. The keynote address yesterday was delivered by MoJ Minister Lord Keen, who touched on most of these topics in his speech. It is understood he did not take questions after the speech and left very promptly.
The MoJ has just released Lord Keen’s speech on civil justice reform and while it is worth reading, it really does not say anything new about the Government’s reform agenda and its preferred timetable for change.
Today the MoJ published part 1 of its response to the recent whiplash consultation, which is well ahead of the expected date of 7 April – make of that what you will.
It will also publish the Prison and Courts Bill today, the legislative framework for implementing these reforms (along with secondary rules and CPR changes). The changes planned should apply from 1 October 2018; although the transitional trigger is not yet clear (the consultation indicated it could be for ‘accidents on or after’). The principal elements announced today are set out below.