The timetable for implementation of the Civil Liability Bill has been amended in order for the Ministry of Justice to test and consult upon a new user portal. The reforms were due to be implemented in April 2019 but this has now been put back by one year to April 2020.
The Civil Liability Bill will introduce a fixed tariff for soft tissue injuries at rates much lower than the current Judicial College Guideline. The introduction of these tariffs combined with a simultaneous increase to the small claims limit for personal injury claims from £1,000 to £5,000 (by secondary legislation) is expected to result in a large increase in the number of litigants in person making personal injury claims.
In relation to the new timetable, the MoJ have stated that “there will need to be extensive user testing” of the new portal and that they consider it “crucial that these reforms and the implementation of the online platform is done right rather than quickly”.