Old rules and rulings revisited

 Industry news roundup: week ended 24 March 2014:

It seems like we just can’t get away from the experience of most returning to older, already decided personal injury compensation cases or even just holding on to the current laws.

The news stories were thick this week when it came down to new changes to old ways. In fact one of the more welocme ones has to do with 53 year old Joanne Dunhill and her very long uphill struggle after she sustained life-changing injuries. In fact, the original personal injury compensation award Ms Dunhill received Рaround £12,000 in compensation Рcould no longer be accurate, as a Supreme Court judge took a look at the original setlement agreement and agreed that there might be cause for a re-examination of the amount of money Mr Dunhill has coming to her.

Of course the idea that Ms Dunhill might gian access to a better compensation reward is nothing if not out of step with the average civil court. In fact, the Law Society recently said this week that the majority of courts in the UK have been choosing to care less about access to justice and have instead focused on administrative costs.

The irony here is of course these judicial changes were originally brought to life to reform the personal injury law profession in a way that supported claimants. However, now these so-called “‘Jackson reforms” as they are being interpreted seem to focus better on keeping cash within the current judicial support structure as it stands now.

Not only that, but the Civil Justice Council has had it up to here with the ‘effects’ of the Jackson reforms. The CJC says that not only have clients grown confused they’ve seen their legal bills increase, the amount of time spent complying with these new reforms takes, and the sheer inconsistency that these reforms were applied add up to one thing and one thing only in my opinion: failure. A well-intentioned failure to be sure, but it’s still not something I would characterise as a resounding success by any means!

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