Transport Committee launches new inquiry into whiplash

15 March 2013

New inquiry: whiplash terms of reference and call for evidence

The Transport Committee calls for evidence on reducing the number and costs of whiplash claims, following up its recent inquiries into the cost of motor insurance.

The Chair of the Committee, Louise Ellman MP, has said:

"It is vitally important for policymakers to understand the reasons for the very high cost of motor insurance, especially for young drivers, and to take steps to bring that cost down. Whiplash claims undoubtedly play a part in driving up the cost of motor insurance, but access to justice for injured people must be preserved. We want to hear the arguments on these points and will publish a report in the summer about the best way forward on this difficult issue."

The Committee intends to hear oral evidence later in the year on the Ministry of Justice consultation paper on this issue, Reducing the number and costs of Whiplash Claims (PDF 489 KB). In particular, it would like to receive written evidence on the following points:

  • Whether the Government is correct in describing Great Britain as the "whiplash capital of the world"
  • Whether it is correct to say that the costs of whiplash claims add £90 to the average premium and, if so, what proportion of this additional cost is due to "exaggerated, misrepresented or fabricated" claims
  • Whether the proposals put forward by the Government, in relation to medical evidence of whiplash and incentives to challenge fraudulent or exaggerated claims, are likely to reduce motor insurance premiums and, if so, to what extent
  • The likely impact of the proposals on access to justice for claimants who are genuinely injured
  • Whether there are other steps which the Government should be taking to reduce the cost of motor insurance

We would be grateful to receive written submissions by Monday 15 April 2013. Submissions should clearly indicate whether or not they have been written specifically for the Committee. The Committee would be content to receive material prepared in response to the Ministry of Justice consultation but the Committee normally only publishes submissions prepared specifically in response to its own calls for evidence.

Image: iStockphoto

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