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Claims Portal now used for uncontested claims

Claims for injuries at work or in public places will now be settled more quickly through the online Claims Portal rather than being referred to court.
The online platform, which was introduced for low value road accident injury claims in 2010, should now be used for uncontested claims of up to £25,000 covered by employer liability or public liability. It now also covers road accident injury claims of up to £25,000, up from the previous maximum of £10,000.
Extending the remit of the Claims Portal is one of a number of changes introduced by the Government to tackle the “compensation culture” and escalating insurance premiums, the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) said. It follows changes to the laws governing so-called ‘no win, no fee’ arrangements and the ban on referral fees paid between lawyers, insurers, claims firms and others introduced in April by the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act (LASPO).
“We are turning the tide on the compensation culture which has pushed up the cost of insurance for drivers, schools and businesses – and taking another important step to reducing the cost of living for ordinary people,” said Justice Minister Helen Grant.
The new system is designed to be “simpler and faster” than going to court, and will reduce the amount that companies, or their insurers, have to pay in legal fees when claims are uncontested, the Government said. This in turn would result in savings for insurance customers through reduced premiums, it said. The amount of compensation victims will receive for genuine claims will not be affected by using the portal, it said.
Personal injury expert Ian Evans of Pinsent Masons, local authorities and other organisations that could face personal injury claims to make themselves familiar with the new procedure.
“A failure to do so means that the costs of dealing with low level claims can become disproportionately high,” he said.
“Any organisation, and/or its insurers, faced with such claims will have to be registered on the portal as new claims after 1 August 2013 will be dealt with through the Portal. It is essential that organisations understand the new system and process,” he said.
Claims dealt with through the portal will attract fixed costs which are considerably lower than the fees awarded by the courts under the current regime. However the cost of any claims that fall out of the process for whatever reason will substantially exceed the fixed costs for portal claims. This can include a failure by the employer or public body to respond to a claim within the prescribed time limits.

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