Who pays legal fees in 'No Win, No Fee' compensation claims?
Posted on 1st August 2019
MG Legal, personal injury solicitors in Preston are able to report that the NHS Resolution's annual report for 2018/19, published last week, shows that spending on claimant legal costs was £442.3m – a fall of more than £24m. This news comes as the government is preparing to rein in legal spending when it comes to personal injury cases.
Good news first, NHSR Chief Executive, Helen Vernon has said that there has recently been a massive culture change in how the NHS deals with claims and in particular the number of claims that are dealt with via the route of mediation rather than through the Courts. The number of personal injury cases due to clinical negligence and the like going through mediation has risen by 110%. Personal Injury Solicitors in Preston, MG Legal, note that in the past it has been really quite rare for a case to settle at mediation rather than at Court, and it would seem that the NHS have been on a mission to change this! In 2018/19 the NHSR received 10,678 new clinical negligence claims, five more than the previous year. Of the 15,655 claims settled in the year, 70.7% of these were settled without formal court proceedings (against 69.6% in 2017/18).
Despite the positive spin on things, let us take a little look at why it is not all as good as it first seems.
Firstly, defence legal costs increased by 8.3% in 2018/19 to £139.6m! The NHS also received 5 more Clinical Negligence Claims that last year. Further; payments to claimants in clinical claims went up 13.5% to almost £1.4bn, taking overall spending on medical negligence to £2.36bn. Preston’s personal Injury Solicitors, MG Legal, note that Helen Vernon has tried to explain away the higher payments to claimants as largely being due to the compensation is awarded for high-value claims, with privately-funded care for life, has led to 'substantial' awards often in excess of £20m.
Nevertheless; Gordon Dalyell, president of the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers, said the levels of compensation and static claims figures showed the NHS is still not learning from mistakes stating that ‘We all want to protect the health service but the simple fact is that an injured person’s needs are not reduced because the institution which caused the needless harm is so loved,’ he added. ‘The right for an innocent, injured patient to receive fair redress also must be preserved.’
If you have suffered a personal injury, or an injury due to clinical negligence or experienced medical negligence at the hands of a doctor or surgeon, please do not hesitate to contact MG Legal via firstname.lastname@example.org or on 01995 602 129. Our personal injury lawyers accept all claims on a No Win No Fee basis, and have a success rate for accepted claims, in excess of 99%.
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