2 min read

Pursuers and Defenders Reach Agreement Over COVID-19 Hit Personal Injury Claims

Read more

By John Maillie & Tom Baker


Published 16 June 2020


DAC Beachcroft Scotland and Thompsons Scotland, have collaborated to create an innovative Agreement for use between defender firms/insurers and claimant firms to facilitate the progression of cases which were in litigation or were prospective litigation matters being conducted by claimant firms affected by the pandemic.

The Agreement drafted between them to potentially enable and regulate the progression of cases in which the firms are acting, has now been adopted and approved by the Law Society of Scotland's Civil Justice Committee and the Law Society of Scotland will be publishing the Agreement on their Civil Justice Committee website page. The Society’s Communications Team will also be targeting personal injury practitioners by email and intend to issue these communications as soon as possible. The Agreement has also been approved by the Working Group that has set up between the Law Society of Scotland and the Scottish Courts and Tribunals Service.

The Agreement is intended to allow cases to progress and, where appropriate, settle in the way that they would have had it not been for the intervention of the COVID-19 pandemic and the extraordinary circumstances that it has caused and to ease the burden on the Scottish Courts once they restart.

Under the Agreement a process has been created by which the participating parties are, in appropriate cases, able to agree to enter into a timetabled process that would progress a claim in much the same way as it would before a court with a built in escalation process involving a nominated partner in each participating firm for any disputes that might arise.

In cases that are still outstanding when the courts resume normal business, the intention is that the court will be asked, in effect, to adopt what the parties have already done under the Agreement and move forward from that point.

It is the hope of all those involved with the creation of this Agreement that this quasi-court process will assist pursuers and defenders in progressing claims that would otherwise have risked stagnation and mean that when normality returns the courts will not be faced with the level of backlog that they would otherwise have to deal with.

Any enquiries about the Agreement should be directed to our John Maillie , DACB Scotland Location Head, who along with Andrew Henderson of Thompsons , Solicitors was one of the architects of the Agreement.