General election 'could delay whiplash reform for years'

The UK parliament viewed over a bridge with fast-moving traffic

Theresa May’s decision to hold a snap general election could delay the Ministry of Justice’s proposed whiplash reforms for years, campaign group Access to Justice has claimed.

Speaking ahead of an All Party Parliamentary Group meeting on whiplash last night, Access to Justice spokesman Andrew Twambley told Post: “The general election will put the whole bill into question. It will go back to like it was a year or so ago. Rather than being a battle, now is the time to press home a compromise.

“We have the alternative claims framework, which answers 99% of the government’s requirements for whiplash reform. If we can present an alternative to the government in the Autumn with all parties agreeing, the government can take it and then get on with Brexit.”

Speakers at the meeting included Carpenters Law managing director Donna Scully, Access to Justice spokesman Andrew Twambley, ABI director of general insurance policy James Dalton and LV claims director Martin Milliner.

Speaking at the meeting on the effect of the the general election on the Prison and Courts Bill, chair Craig Tracey MP said: “The bill committee its still sitting tonight so it’s business as usual, but it’s hard to say after that. There is a short time left so it might have to be addressed in the next parliament.

“Whether this will be a priority at this stage I couldn’t say, but we will have a better picture over the next few days.”

ABI director of general insurance policy James Dalton said: “The drafting of the bill needs to include provisions to curb the scourge of claims management companies.

“It’s important for the government to ensure all Insurance Fraud Taskforce recommendations are delivered. We very much support what’s in the Prison and Courts Bill.”

On Access to Justice’s alternative claims framework, Dalton said: “[Its] too little, too late, from people desperate to stop reform.”

LV claims director Martin Milliner said: “The bill presents a once in a generation opportunity to reset the moral compass of society, which is being prayed upon by CMCs.

“The consequences of that over the past 15 years has been the doubling of whiplash claims. That problem will be dealt with to a large extent by the bill.”



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