Whiplash claims driving car insurance rates upward, PM says

Prime Minister David Cameron wants to reduce the number of motor car insurance claims related to whiplash injuries, as compensation payments paid out by the nation’s insurance firms have resulted in soaring car insurance rates.

The so-called ‘compensation culture’ in the UK needs to be dealt with, the prime minister said, as car insurance companies are drowning under a deluge of personal injury claims.  Claims for minor whiplash-like injuries have grown to such massive levels to prompt Downing Street to dub the UK as Europe’s ‘whiplash capital,’ much to the nation’s chagrin.

While accident volumes have actually been falling over the past few years, the number of claims being made has rocketed upward, with whiplash claims increasing by more than a third since 2009.  The costs these claims generate for the nation’s insurers result in average premium payments being pushed up by about £90 a year in an effort to recover these costs, experts say.

The Prime Minister called a summit with leading insurers and the Association of British Insures recently in an attempt to discover ways in which claims volume could be reduced.  The general consensus of the summit was that claims threshold for such injuries must be increased and that more medical evidence must be required before proof of a whiplash-related injury is allowed to stand up in a court of law.

ABI president, Nick Starling, welcomed any initiatives introduced to restrict the number of whiplash-related claims, as he said the industry incurs approximately £2 billion in costs on a yearly basis due to paying out compensation claims and legal fees.

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