Reforms to the Law on Damages

On 4 May 2007 the Department for Constitutional Affairs published a Consultation Paper proposing reforms to the civil law on damages.

The paper does not create any new rights but instead proposes :

  • Changes to the Fatal Accidents Act 1976. The main proposals include i) extending the statutory list of claimant’s able to make a claim as dependents; ii) extend the list of claimant’s able to claim bereavement damages and iii) to provide a fixed sum of £5k in bereavement damages for each eligible child of the deceased under the age of 18.
  • The introduction of statutory provisions in relation to psychiatric illness.
  • Changes to the approach taken with collateral benefits, gratuitous care and the cost of private care.
  • Possible new methods to calculate accommodation expenses.

The period for consultation ended on 27 July 2007. A full copy of the Consultation Paper can be found at http://www.dca.gov.uk/consult/damages/cp0907.pdf

Ogden Tables update

The sixth edition of the Ogden Tables were published on 3 May 2007. The main changes to the tables are:

  • An increase in multipliers for pecuniary loss and loss of pension and
  • Revised calculations for contingencies other than death to include level of ‘educational attainment’.

In ‘Clever Claimants ?’ Brendan Baxter reviews the main changes and the implications to insurers. A full copy of this article can been found at http://www.rpc.co.uk/FileServer.aspx?oID=583&1ID=O