Accident Injury

Choosing The Right Personal Injury Solicitor Is Now More Important Than Ever25th Apr 2022

by Adrian Cormack on 25th Apr 2022

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Sweeping new changes to personal injury claims rules now make it vital to choose a specialist solicitor right from the start.

These new rules will make it much harder for small and medium-sized law firms to handle accident claims. So more of them will refer to this work to specialist personal injury solicitors like Coles Miller.

The average high street law firm may no longer be able to handle this work – or wish to pursue these cases. So it pays to speak with Coles Miller’s highly experienced injury lawyers.

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What Has Changed – And What It Means

Virtually all personal injury claims must now go through the government’s online Damages Claims Portal (DCP). Lawyers defending claims will soon also be expected to use it too.

This matters because – for the average high street lawyer – it will feel like a fundamental and very sudden change to the way personal injury claims are now handled. And it was bought in with just a few days’ notice. Law firms that don’t specialise in personal injury claims will suddenly discover that everything has changed.

The DCP is not the first time that HM Government has foisted a claims portal on accident victims. In May 2021, the government brought in new rules in a bid to reduce the number of supposedly ‘minor’ injury cases – notably whiplash claims. (Though anyone who’s ever suffered a soft tissue injury will confirm there’s nothing minor about it. They’re painful, debilitating and can have serious long-term effects.)

Since then, the number of smaller law firms withdrawing from personal injury work has risen steadily. Even some large firms in the Midlands and North West that concentrated on large volumes of less serious road accident claims have now folded.

At Coles Miller, we’ve noticed a significant increase in the number of law firms referring personal injury work to us. And not just smaller firms – plenty of medium-sized firms too, along with a few firms that are larger than Coles Miller.

They’ve entrusted their clients’ personal injury and clinical negligence claims to us because they know our long history of specialising in this work and our strong record of success with claims ranging from a few thousand pounds to eight figures in compensation.

Which Claims Are Excluded From The New Rules?

These new Civil Procedure Rules (the 142nd update) affect all County Court claims where the claimant is legally represented – no matter how small the claim. But they do exclude some areas of the law:

  • Debt claims and possession claims. (Find out more here about recovering personal debts and commercial debts.)
  • Claims involving adults who lack mental capacity. (Find out more here about Coles Miller’s work involving Court of Protection cases.)
  • Claims brought under Part 8 of the Civil Procedure Rules (these are cases unlikely to involve much dispute of the facts). This includes employment law and public liability claims that have reached stage three (a final hearing if the amount of damages is disputed).
  • Official Injury Claims (ie, cases without a lawyer) proceeding to Practice Direction 27B – the small claims track for cases up to £10,000 (or £5,000 for road traffic whiplash claims). Though importantly, Practice Direction 27B does not apply to vulnerable road users – such as motorcyclists, pillion/sidecar passengers, wheelchair or mobility scooter users, cyclists, horse riders, pedestrians and children.
  • Claims involving more than one claimant or defendant (but these are expected to be added to the DCP later this year).
  • Claims for remedy other than damages.

Have You Been Injured? Claim Compensation – No Win No Fee

Have you been injured in an accident? No Win No Fee enable you to claim compensation – with no financial risk to you.

No Win No Fee claims – or ‘Conditional Fee Agreements’ as they’re called officially – enable you to claim for injury without having to worry about the upfront cost of instructing a solicitor.

As a law firm, we take on the cost of pursuing your claim – so you can be sure there’s a very good chance of you winning your case and gaining the compensation you need to fund the treatment, care and rehabilitation you need following your injury.

You almost certainly won’t need to go to court. Virtually all our personal injury cases are settled without going to court. And in the unlikely event that your claim is not successful, there’s nothing to pay.

Find out more here about Conditional Fee Agreement personal injury claims – discover how the No Win No Fee system can help you.

Injury Claims Calculator: How Much Could I Claim?

Use our quick and easy personal injury claims calculator to see how much you could claim for your injury.

Further Reading

  • Paralysed Lift Fall Victim Gains £3.4 Million. Read more…
  • Coles Miller Helps Injured E-Bike Rider To Claim £90,000. Read more…
  • Claiming Compensation For Road Accidents. Read more…
  • Hit By An Electric Scooter? Claim For Your Injuries. Read more…
  • Rising Number Of Pedestrian Accident Claims. Read more…

Get Expert Legal Advice From The Specialists

Coles Miller’s Personal Injury Department is led by Managing Partner Adrian Cormack, who specialises in head and brain injury compensation claims. He is an Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL) Accredited Brain Injury Specialist.

Contact Adrian Cormack at our Fleetsbridge office for expert legal advice on personal injury claims.