Welcoming the news that the Civil Liability Act has received royal assent, MDU director of professional services Dr Matthew Lee said:
'The Civil Liability Act includes reforms to the process of setting the personal injury discount rate (PIDR), which is the formula for calculating personal injury compensation payments. It is welcome news that the Act has royal assent and the discount rate section came into effect yesterday.
'The PIDR, was drastically reduced by 3.25% in 2017, which has driven up the cost of clinical negligence claims dramatically. It has doubled and, in some cases, trebled high value claims making £37m the NHS's highest award to date. The Act requires a change to the way the rate is set and should go some way to redressing the financial damage caused to the NHS and GP indemnity costs by the PIDR reduction.
'The Lord Chancellor has 90 days to start the rate review and the determination must be made within 140 days after that. While this is welcome news, we don't expect the rate to be restored from its current level of -0.75% to the previous rate of 2.5%. Awards will still be considerably higher than before.
'The Civil Liability Act is a step in the right direction but we still need radical legal reform to restore balance and fairness to the way compensation is awarded.'
Find out more at themdu.com/faircomp
This guidance was correct at publication 21/12/2018. It is intended as general guidance for members only. If you are a member and need specific advice relating to your own circumstances, please contact one of our advisers.