Cyclists could be excluded from rise in small claims limit

Cyclists in city traffic

The government is considering plans to exclude cyclists and other vulnerable road users from the proposed £5000 limit on the small claims track.

In a debate in the House of Lords, Ministry of Justice spokesperson Lord Keen of Elie said the department was “giving further consideration” toward the issue.

The comments came as the controversial Civil Liability Bill – which includes raising the small claims limit for road traffic accidents from £1000 to £5000 – is making its passage through the upper house.

Lord Keen was responding to a proposed amendment to the Bill that suggested the claims limit should only be restricted to motorists suffering whiplash injuries.

“It is the result of a lot of discussion in committee about how to avoid what is otherwise a very useful Bill having an adverse effect on vulnerable road users, who could be defined as cyclists, pedestrians, motor cyclists—those who can sometimes suffer most from injuries such as this,” said Labour peer Lord Berkeley.

Baroness Vere of Norbiton, a government whip in the Lords, said the government is “sympathetic” to those concerns.

“I am aware that such road users remain captured by the government’s non-Bill measure to increase the small-claims limit for road-traffic-accident-related claims to £5000,” she said.

“We will deal with this issue in more detail a little later today, but I can say that we are sympathetic to the arguments made in relation to vulnerable road users and will continue to consider the matter.”

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