Exaggerated whiplash claims to be thrown out of court in Government crackdown

Fraudulent compensation claims are being targeted to bring insurance costs down

Anyone exaggerating whiplash or other injuries to get compensation will be thrown out of court in a Government crackdown on dishonest claims.

Insurance premiums have been pushed up by “compensation culture” inflated by the no win, no fee industry, according to the Ministry of Justice.

Figures from the Association of British Insurers show that the number of dishonest motor claims increased by 34 per cent to a record 59,900 in 2013, with a value of £811 million.

The new measures aim to make it harder for fraudsters to profit from exaggerated injuries or contrived “accidents”, both on the road and at work or in public places.

Courts will throw out compensation applications in full where claimants have been “fundamentally dishonest” to stop people exploiting the system by making bogus claims or grossly exaggerating the extent of their injuries.

Whiplash claims are a particular target and people will have to have independent medical assessments with fixed fees to claim compensation.

Rules will also restrict the ability of lawyers to settle claims without confirmation of the claimant’s injury.

Claims for whiplash treatment has risen by a third, but road accidents have fallen Whiplash injuries occur when tendons and ligaments in the neck are damaged by a sudden movement. A cursory look at Google reveals the prevalence of “compensation culture”.

Searching “whiplash” throws up a clutch of compensation law firms. “Had a whiplash injury? Make a claim today,” urges one result.

Incentives used by lawyers to encourage claims like cash or iPads will be banned.

Chris Grayling, the Justice Secretary, said the average motor insurance premium has fallen by more than £100 in the past year thanks to Government measures.

He said: “The new measures are the latest stage of the government’s delivery on the commitment to deal with high insurance costs made by the Prime Minister at an insurance summit in 2012.”

Insurance firms have assured ministers they will pass any savings from the reforms to customers.

Otto Thoresen, director general of the Association of British Insurers, said: “These changes are a very positive development for the vast majority of honest insurance customers who end up paying for the fraud of the minority.”

Read more: 'Crash for cash' gangs in insurance scam
Motorists hit by £200m costs from accident claims
Insurers told to crackdown on whiplash fraud
Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Business Development Executive / Digital Marketing Executive

£26000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A luxury beauty house with a nu...

Recruitment Genius: Housekeepers - Immediate Start

£8 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This company are currently recruiting new exp...

Recruitment Genius: Head Concierge

£25000 - £28000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This award winning Property Man...

Recruitment Genius: Content, SEO and PPC Executive

£20000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A fantastic opportunity has ari...

Day In a Page

On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

Thongs ain't what they used to be

Big knickers are back
Thurston Moore interview

Thurston Moore interview

On living in London, Sonic Youth and musical memoirs
In full bloom

In full bloom

Floral print womenswear
From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

From leading man to Elephant Man

Bradley Cooper is terrific
In this the person to restore our trust in the banks?

In this the person to restore our trust in the banks?

Dame Colette Bowe - interview
When do the creative juices dry up?

When do the creative juices dry up?

David Lodge thinks he knows
The 'Cher moment' happening across fashion just now

Fashion's Cher moment

Ageing beauty will always be more classy than all that booty
Thousands of teenage girls enduring debilitating illnesses after routine school cancer vaccination

Health fears over school cancer jab

Shock new Freedom of Information figures show how thousands of girls have suffered serious symptoms after routine HPV injection
Fifa President Sepp Blatter warns his opponents: 'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

Fifa president Sepp Blatter issues defiant warning to opponents
Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report

Weather warning

Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report
LSD: Speaking to volunteer users of the drug as trials get underway to see if it cures depression and addiction

High hopes for LSD

Meet the volunteer users helping to see if it cures depression and addiction
German soldier who died fighting for UK in Battle of Waterloo should be removed from museum display and given dignified funeral, say historians

Saving Private Brandt

A Belgian museum's display of the skeleton of a soldier killed at Waterloo prompts calls for him to be given a dignified funeral