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Archive for December 19th, 2013

A bit of the ‘Rive Gauche’ for you…..

The resemblance is, indeed, remarkable. The stuff of nightmares?

The Spectator has the story: Exclusive: David Cameron IS related to Catherine the Great

But to inject a bit of the festive season – please do have a look at Cassons for Counsel –  excellent Christmas video.

Perhaps not quite so festive – but certainly very useful from Cassons – East Lancs tax expert’s social media warning

It will take a fair amount of ‘bloviating’ from Alex Salmond and his plans for Independence and ‘Independent Scotland’ starting life as a part of the EU  to get around this ruling from the EU:

Herman Van Rompuy deals EU blow to Alex Salmond’s independence plans

And so we move on to the events in Chancery Lane at The Law Society : Law Society leadership in chaos as solicitors pass no-confidence vote

And from there to news: 

Eddie Izzard on going into politics: ‘Why shouldn’t I be mayor of London?’

I am a fan, as many are, of Eddie Izzard and have had the pleasure of seeing him perform live several times.  I think it would be rather fun to have Mr Izzard as London Mayor…  Ou est Le Boris?  Le Boris est dans l’arbre ? 

The Guardian has the story

 

Simon Myerson QC writes: The Risk We Run

“On 6th January the Criminal Bar is going on strike. Or, more accurately, they aren’t going to turn up for work in the morning. On 6th January I start a civil trial. I will be working on that day because the Court has listed the matter and my client is paying me to be there. I make this declaration because I want to talk about what is going to happen. I should also be spending this evening doing the Opening for that trial and I very much fear that I will pay for this post with a 3am finish some time soon. Still, it’s important.

As you would expect the Bar Standards Board has published guidance about the 6th January. It says that not attending Court is a disciplinary offence.”

Read the full post here

No rational basis for denying all prisoners the vote, concludes joint Parliamentary Committee : UK Human Rights blog

But it is the festive season – so time for a bit more of the bizarre…

Burglar trapped hanging over toilet says “please help. call the police”

The Police were called.  Apparently, this burglar isn’t very good at crime.

I am often surprised by Mr Grant Shapps MP.  Apart from his double identity life of the past – I find it remarkable (a) That he is Chairman of The Tory Party and (b) That his constituents elected him.  But, be that as it may.

His latest antics are covered in this remarkable story from The Guardian: “Grant Shapps tried to prevent housing plan for airfield where he keeps plane. Local council wants to build 700 homes on Panshanger airfield where Shapps keeps his £100,000 Piper Saratoga aircraft”

 

 

 

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More Transparency Expected from Personal Injury Claims Management Companies

According to the Citizen’s Advice Bureau, it is a “civil and legal right” to make an accident claim, yet 69 percent of people do not do this [1]. There are many reasons for this, just some of which include not having the right knowledge, or not having the funds available to submit and support a claim. Yet it is possible that these problems can be rectified by doing some research online and looking into suitable options; perhaps the industry still has some work to do in order to make information clearer.

This is something that the Ministry of Justice is also keen to do; they are currently preparing to follow up their consultation on introducing more stringent rules for claims management companies with a third inquiry into fines early next year. The idea is that they can clamp down on poor industry practices to make decisions much easier and safer for consumers.

Personal injury claims management companies (CMCs) are already down 38 percent (as of the end of September) compared to the same period in 2012, following the MoJ’s Conduct Rules which were introduced in July. The new consultation on proposed fines for CMCs accused of poor practices will go hand-in-hand with the consultation to tighten the MoJ’s Conduct Rules.

The changes wanted by the MoJ in this area include:

●     Ensuring investigations are carried out to establish the merits of a claim,

●     Ensuring data received from introducers has been legally obtained / is compliant with rules,

●     Not making claims recklessly, falsely or in any way intended to mislead.

These proposed amendments are expected to be introduced after the new year, and should help to promote transparency when it comes to claims management companies. It is not expected to increase the burden on CMCs who are already compliant with the regulations.

The MoJ released a report which makes for interesting reading for consumers and industry professionals alike. It speaks of the 38 percent personal injury claims management company shrinkage, as well as the implementation of the Conduct Rules. They say: “Most of the CMCs that have exited the market were small businesses, which had either ceased trading altogether or were focusing on the credit hire/bent metal aspects of accident management.” [2]

“This is almost wholly as a result of the civil justice and related reforms to this sector introduced in April 2013. We anticipate that the personal injury claims market will continue to contract in 2013 and beyond as CMCs who are unable to adapt their business model to comply with the referral fee ban, exit the market.”

The report also explained that many personal injury focussed CMCs had been successful in adapting to the referral fee ban through the shift in business practices. This includes the amendment of models in order to make them compliant with the ban; popular solutions involve marketing schemes and service agreements. At the end of September 2013, there were 1485 authorised firms out of a total of 2350.

CMCs will need to closely monitor changes to regulations to ensure they are providing consumers with the correct information, but it will lead to much more transparency that could even lead to more people following their civil and legal right to make a claim.

 

Sources:

[1] First Personal Injury, www.firstpersonalinjury.co.uk

[2] Post Online, http://www.postonline.co.uk/post/news/2308777/personal-injury-cmcs-down-by-38-as-moj-prepares-fines-consultation

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