The General Scheme of the Personal Injuries Assessment Board (Amendment) Bill 2017 has been published by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation.
The Bill aims to strengthen the powers of the Injuries Board and to assist the growth and development of the claims process. The Bill stems from the report of the Cost of Insurance Working Group who made recommendations in relation to maximising the Injuries Board model so that more claims are settled through that process.
The Bill seeks to address issues relating to cases of non-cooperation such as non-attendance at medicals and failure to provide details of special damages or loss of earnings.
The Bill will also provide that the Book of Quantum is reviewed every three years and give the Injuries Board power to obtain information from individuals and organisations in order to provide data.
The General Scheme of Bill has been sent to the Office of the Parliamentary Counsel for drafting and also to the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation for pre-legislative scrutiny.
The Bill includes features to:
- Allow the Board more discretion to release claims in circumstances where claims cannot proceed.
- Apply limitation periods in a consistent manner.
- Require compliance with the Injuries Board process.
- Establish an electronic portal.
- Ensure the Book of Quantum is updated regularly (on a triennial basis).
- Create a process for notification of uncomplete claims.
The Bill is to be welcomed as a first step in remedying the issues that have been highlighted with the process as it currently stands.