It is estimated that every year, over a million people make a claim for a personal injury, or an accident, in the United Kingdom. In fact, the UK is referred to as the ‘whiplash capital of Europe’ by the media, since some 1,500 claims are made every day for whiplash in the UK, while the rest of Europe experiences nothing like those numbers.
But why does the UK have so many claims?
No win, no fee
When ‘no win, no fee’ was introduced into UK courts through the Courts and Legal Services Act 1990, there was an almost immediate increase in the number of people choosing to bring forward a personal injury claim. The Courts and Legal Services Act 1990, whose ‘no win, no fee’ section was introduced into courts in 1995, gave ordinary people a way to seek justice for their injuries, without having to pay any legal costs upfront.
Prior to 1995, it was very costly to make a personal injury claim. Legal fees could quite easily exceed a thousand pounds; with no contingency, should the claim fail.
‘No win, no fee’ changed all that. Otherwise known as ‘conditional fee agreements’, ‘no win, no fee agreements’ offer a level of protection to the claimant. These agreements stipulate that should the claimant’s claim be unsuccessful, then they will not have to pay any of their own legal team’s fees. This reduced level of risk is the key reason why accident claims in the United Kingdom are a great deal higher than they were thirty years ago.
Another key reason behind the increase in accident claims in the United Kingdom is the fact that people are now better educated about their legal rights following an accident.
The law makes it very clear that if you have been injured through no fault of your own, and somebody else was to blame, then you are entitled to financial compensation. Law firms have hammered home this fact through advertising and marketing for some twenty years, which has greatly improved the public’s awareness of their rights to make a claim.
Better access to sound legal advice
Finally, another reason behind the increase in accident claims in the United Kingdom is due to the easy accessibility of sound legal advice, and particularly so through the internet.
You can get legal advice within minutes online following an accident, or you can make a phone call to an accident helpline, such as http://www.accidentadvicehelpline.co.uk/, for immediate legal advice. Such helplines are operated by highly trained claims advisors backed by robust legal departments, and the service operated by them is invaluable for the public and especially for those who have been injured through no fault of their own.