Everyone expected that Covid would cause another delay to the go-live date on the new MoJ claims portal, so the news from HM Govt is no surprise.
Although courts have adapted to remote working where possible and there is more arbitration now compared to 2019 as people accept in-person case battles may take years to resolve, the backlog is still building. When the system gets going online it MUST be 100% accurate, fair and accessible to all parties, as it’s highly likely there will no alternative to the new normal.
Here’s some insurance industry comment;
Responding to the delay, Donna Scully, Director at Carpenters Group, said:
“Although frustrating, given the outstanding issues to be resolved and the backdrop of the worsening pandemic, a further delay was inevitable, but only allowing an extra month when we have yet to see the new Rules is unreasonable both for those trying to develop a workable process once we have the Rules and for customers who need the system to work from the start. Amending a process already up and running is much harder as we learnt with the Medco system.
The new claims process must be fully fit-for-purpose when launched to smooth the transition and to minimise the increased risks of fraudulent behaviour.
There are significant dangers if there is a rush to implement too early.”
A copy of the Written Ministerial Statement can be found here: https://questions-statements.parliament.uk/written-statements/detail/2021-01-11/hcws693
HANDL REACTION & COMMENT;
Graham Pulford, chief executive of handl Group, has commented on the MoJ announcement that the litigants in person (LiP) portal will be delayed.
“We welcome this sensible decision to delay the portal in order to confirm the rules by which it will operate and ensure that consumers are properly informed about the forthcoming changes in access to civil justice, including the need for legal expenses insurance (LEI) cover.
“In the post reform world, consumers must have adequate legal expenses insurance (LEI) when they come to make an injury claim, as well as access to rehabilitation services to treat their injuries.”
“The judiciary has made clear that LEI is appropriate protection for consumers, so this delay will give LEI providers like us the opportunity to work with MoJ and the FCA to build consumer awareness of this cover and make sure LEI is readily available to consumers.”
“The industry has shown itself capable of co-operation when the chips are down during the Covid pandemic. We have brought forward a number of cross-industry solutions, such as alternative dispute resolution, that remove frictional costs and avoid overworking the courts.”
“The lack of an ADR mechanism is one of the major challenges holding back the implementation of the new portal, so we are happy to offer our support to MoJ and help fix this outstanding issue.”
Following today’s ministerial announcement by the Ministry of Justice confirming a revised launch date for Whiplash Reforms and Official Injury Claim of May 2021, here is a response from Dominic Clayden at MIB.
“Following the Ministry of Justice’s (MoJ) announcement today that the proposed go-live date for the launch of the Whiplash Reforms is now May, we can confirm that the build of Official Injury Claim service remains on track.
“This is based on the current assumed scope agreed with the MoJ. MIB will complete the last stages of the build in conjunction with MoJ when the Civil Procedure Rule Committee has agreed the new Rules and new Pre-action Protocol for the new service.
“MIB continues to work closely with MoJ on the run-up to its public launch campaign to help businesses prepare for the launch of the service. We will provide a further update as soon as we can.”