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Formby residents could face being hounded by sales calls following change in PPI laws

Change in PPI laws could see Formby hounded by sales calls. Formby residents could face being bombarded with nuisance PPI-type calls following the government’s decision to raise the small claims limit for road traffic accidents from April 2019, according to a leading lawyer.

Personal injury solicitor James Barker from Kirwans law firm, said the recent announcement that the small claims limit for RTAs will rise from £1,000 to £5,000, with claimants no longer entitled to recover legal costs, will leave the door open for claims management companies (CMCs) to swoop on unsuspecting individuals.

The fact that Liverpool has previously been named as ‘injury claims capital of the UK for road accidents’ by the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries’ (IFoA), with 55% of road accidents resulting in a claim, means that the region will be a particular target for these companies.

James fears that potential claimants will then be harassed into making claims which, if later prove to be exaggerated, could result in them facing legal action by insurance firms for fraud.

James Barker of Kirwans

James said: “With no recompense for legal costs, claimants will be forced to go through the small claims process alone, abandoning what could have potentially been high payouts in the process.

“In addition, research findings by legal training company Bond Solon have revealed that 76% of medical experts would not accept instructions from claimants without a lawyer, severely restricting access to justice.

“As a result, we will see a rise in unregulated claims management companies which will be more interested in taking a huge cut of claimants’ payouts than in helping them navigate their way through the legal system.

“Insurance companies will also exploit the lack of legal advice and medical expertise afforded to the injured party, and will seek to convince claimants to accept a lower settlement than their claim is ultimately worth.”

According to James, the changes could even lead to victims abandoning their claims for fear that the cost of even opening a case will simply be too high.

“Many people will have to pay significant upfront fees to bring a claim, including £216 for a medical report and at least an additional £500 if further reports are required. In addition, there’s the fees needed to issue Court proceedings, plus a further hearing fees for those claiming between £3000 and £5000,” explained James.

“Costs such as these can be completely debilitating for people who are will, if they proceed, will go up against big insurance companies with specialist legal teams while the claimant will be completely unrepresented.”

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