A shocking revelation by the Law Commission has raised eyebrows and doubts over how serious the government really is over tacking insurance fraud.
It became clear last week that the reason why the law on fraud by personal injury victims was not included in the Commission’s reform program was because it did not receive the any support from the Government.
The Law Commissioner for commercial law, David Hertzell told Legal Futures: “While agreeing with the contents of the 12th program, we held discussions with the Ministry of Justice in order to ascertain whether there was the required level of support for the project.”
“At the point, at which entry to the program was finalised, we had not received any indication of that and our understanding was that the government was still considering how the issue should be addressed.”
“This would be a controversial project; it elicited strong views even at the early stages of the selection process. While controversy, in itself, is not a sufficient reason for the commission to reject a project, it is an important factor.”
“We consider that it underscores the need for clear governmental support before we should proceed any further with a proposed project.”
Clear government support seemingly never came and therefore the Commission was forced to drop their injury fraud project, despite themselves believing it to be completely worthwhile and suitable, considering the current climate.
The Government themselves has just introduced a raft of new reforms and to the claims process for whiplash injury, under the guise of its absolute commitment to ridding the industry of fraud for good.
Yet the Law Commission’s revelation may now call into question the Government’s true motives moving forward and although the more recent reforms were warmly received by both claimant and defendant lobbies, the concern will be with what lies ahead.
Are the government really making decisions as part of their commitment to help rid the industry of fraud? Or do their commitments actually lie behind another reason or motive that is being cleverly veiled by their tackling of fraud.
Since the last reforms, the personal injury profession has already suffered a testing 12 months or so. The last thing they will want to see in the future is further crippling reforms being introduced, which have been heavily influenced by people whose best interests lie within their own profits and not what it is in the best interests of genuine claimants.
There are also understandable concerns from the insurer perspective too as they look to move on the momentum of reform, although the Government’s recent announcements reform announcements are bound to appease them for now.