The Official Injury Claim (OIC) service has published a further release of data covering the period from 1 April 2022 – 30 June 2022. This reveals a drastic reduction in claims being removed from the process and a continuing rise in resolutions, with the period accounting for 44% of all settlements since the service was launched in May 2021.
New claims and settlements
Discounting June 2021 – August 2021, when the service was first launched and users were getting to grips with the process, the average number of new claims submitted per month is 23,445. The average for the last quarter is 23,572 and therefore remains broadly consistent with what we have seen previously.
Also consistent is the number of unrepresented claimants which continues at a rate of around 9% of claims submitted.
Settlements however continue on an incline and are up 23% on the previous period, with the last reporting quarter accounting for 44% of all settlements since launch of the service.
Cycle times have increased from 139 to 175 days although this is to be expected. Whilst claims with a shorter prognosis period can progress quickly, those claims where the claimant elects to wait out the prognosis or where the issue of liability needs to be determined by the court will carry a longer cycle. Settlements for claims in the upper prognosis bandings of 9-12 months and 12-15 months have both increased in the latest data which will contribute to the rise.
Our commentary on the previous data release highlighted that unrepresented claimants were recovering at least as much in damages as those who were represented and the most recent data shows that this parity remains.
The average level of damages has increased in this period and this is linked to the greater number of settlements going through in the higher prognosis bandings attracting higher tariff awards. We expect this to continue as the data matures and we pass ”wait out prognosis” periods for those claims involving injuries of longer duration.
The frequency of exceptional uplift claims remains relatively consistent, up slightly from 38% to 41% for unrepresented claimants and down slightly from 23% to 22% for represented claimants.
Claims where mixed injuries feature had a small increase, from 64% to 66.7% however the statistics support the fact that agreements are being reached on these claims within the process.
The number of liability admissions in part or full declined marginally from 84% to 83% and it remains clear that compensators are utilising the additional time afforded by the protocol for liability decisions effectively.
Cases being removed from the process tumbled significantly from 7,642 to just 1,558. Increased engagement from compensators with the MOU process for reallocation between insurers is helping to reduce the number of removals and resolve claims wholly within the process in the first instance.
We continue to monitor behaviours and have developed numerous strategies to combat them, which can be accessed via our whiplash reforms microsite. We are continuing to see the use of ‘duplication’ as a reason to drop claims from the portal when NVCs are in excess of £10,000.00. The claims are then being submitted in the MOJ. In addition, we are seeing claims being issued in part 7 for credit hire when the injury claims are ongoing in the OIC. These claims should be challenged as abuse of process, the claimant only has one claim for damages covering all heads of loss and it needs to be brought as one claim after the right process has been followed.
The argument that claimants have more than one claim for damages is being used by credit hire companies on a range of issues at present. If you require access to our reforms microsite or strategic assistance please get in touch to explore this further.
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