More legal profession changes needed even as CMCs decline

Industry news roundup: week ended 2 Dec 2013:

While news of the decline of the reviled claims management company broke this week, Government officials are still calling for more changes to the profession.

The Ministry of Justice just revealed in its recent personal injury claims management report that the number of CMCs operating in the sector have gone down by 38 per cent over the course of the last year to September. This is a major victory for anyone who feels that CMCs are the bane of the personal injury solicitor’s existence, since they relied heavily on referral fees and unsolicited texts phone calls to generate business for themselves, not to mention the well-earned reputation of CMCs to bring any sort of spurious claim they could if they felt there was a profit to be made in it.

The referral fee ban put several nails in the coffin of the CMC industry back this past April, much to the relief of law firms that are trying to provide quality service to their clients and a court system that was filled to bursting with far too many claims brought by CMCs. It’s absolutely gratifying to me to learn that there’s far less CMCs operating today as there were last year, and hopefully this trend will continue until they’re completely minimised.

Still, there are Government officials who feel that there still needs to be more changes to the legal profession in the UK. Shailesh Vara, MP for North West Cambridgeshire and newly-minted Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State after Helen Grant’s departure a few months ago, has already stated that there’s still much that needs to be done to turn around the UK’s ailing legal system. A former solicitor himself, the Tory MP wants to see the small claims limit increased to take the heat off of insurers that lose shedloads of cash in defending cases in court, despite the fact that raising the limit will see access to justice stripped away from regular Brits as there’s no legal representation in the small claims portal as it exists now. Sounds like a nice bloke, doesn’t he?

Honestly if he’s so self-loathing that he’s trying to put the rest of the UK’s personal injury solicitors out of work, I suppose that’s his own prerogative. I’ll never understand it, though.


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