Jack Straw Backs Ban For Soft Tissue Injury Claims


The Law Of.. ensuring access to justice

After former Justice Secretary, Jack Straw, launched an attack on the personal injury sector, Solicitor Nicola Hardy explains why punitive restrictions against the industry may result in the public losing out on legitimate compensation for serious injuries.

Whiplash injuries

"No Question Of A Compensation Culture"

Speaking at the Modern Claims Conference in Manchester last week Jack Straw said that:

"There is no question of a compensation culture. This is an industry which has ballooned out of nowhere, fuelled partly by too many lawyers chasing too little business."

"Whiplash is an innovation of fertile legal minds which has no real foundation in medical knowledge. Everybody knows the vast majority of whiplash claims are completely unjustified. I support any measures to eliminate soft-tissue injuries."

This is a viewpoint that the former cabinet minister has held for some years, as he has been a leading voice against personal injury solicitors.

It is a typically hardline attitude from government officials, as Jack Straw framed his opinion around Chancellor George Osborne's personal injury reforms, which moved to eradicate whiplash claims.

Dangerous Focus On Whiplash

With another strong voice coming out against the personal injury sector the main focus falls again on 'whiplash' claims, however this could be a dangerous matter to focus on and reforms to personal injury legislation could have wider reaching implications, as Nicola explains:

"The continued scapegoating of the personal injury sector by insurance companies, and in turn the Government, could have serious implications for access to justice for individuals that are affected by accidents that aren't their fault."

"The topic of the conversation is currently focussed on whiplash and that makes everyone think that it's only road traffic accidents that will be affected by any legislation, but soft tissue damage is the main point here and we're getting to a point whereby any accident, be it at work, at home, or on the street, may be ineligible for a claim because claims for soft tissue damage have been banned altogether."

"Jack Straw's comments highlights the gulf between comprehension and facts surrounding the personal injury sector and throughout this discussion it's important to remember that personal injury claims don't make people rich, people don't profit from accidents – they're designed to get people back to a state they would have been in had the incident not have happened."

Ensuring Access To Justice

Anybody that is injured in an accident that wasn't their fault is encouraged to seek legal advice, despite the public perceptions circulating about personal injury claims. When accidents occur that stop us earning a wage, or if they cause long terms injuries that take us a long time to recover from – which is usually the case with soft tissue damage – it is important that people seek reparations that help tie them over until they recover.

Our team of personal injury specialists are on hand to provide help and support to anybody that's been involved in an accident. We consider all cases with complete impartiality and we can advise individuals how they can best receive the compensation that will help them recover from their injuries.

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