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Febuary 2013 Contents

Welcome to the February 2013 issue of PI Brief Update Law Journal. Click the relevant links below to read the articles and take the CPD quiz. Please remember to fill in our quick feedback form after you have finished.

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Personal Injury Articles
MoJ: £500 Fee for RTA Portal Claims Up to £10K to Start by the End of April - Tim Kevan (free article)
£500 Basic fee by end of April. Despite vigorous opposition, the Justice Secretary has now announced the level and timetable for the changes to the RTA Portal Fees. Specifically, the fixed recoverable costs for RTA Portal claims up to £10,000 are to be reduced from the current figure of £1,200 down to £500 from the end of April this year.
The Devil Is in the Detail: Pleading and Proving Allegations of Fraud - David Sawtell, 4 King's Bench Walk
When fraud is alleged, the claimant's credibility is vital. Defendant insurance companies often rely on inconsistencies between a claimant's GP notes, what he or she told his medico-legal expert, what is written in the pleadings and written witness statements and what the claimant finally says at trial. How far can these inconsistencies be relied upon to prove fraud?
Court of Appeal Decides Appeals on Autofocus Evidence - Aidan Ellis, Temple Garden Chambers
In Dickinson and others v Tesco Plc and others [2013] EWCA Civ 36, the Court of Appeal considered four appeals arising from credit hire cases in which the trial Judge based the assessment of the daily rate of hire wholly or partially on evidence put forward by...
Exceeding Fixed Recoverable Costs in the Proposed Expanded Regime - Matthew Hoe, Jaggards
Recent cases on whether there are 'exceptional circumstances' in RTA claims meaning that greater than fixed recoverable costs should be allowed set a benchmark for future expansion of the fixed recoverable costs regime.
Editorial: the Times They Are a Changing - Aidan Ellis, Temple Garden Chambers
The Civil Procedure (Amendment) Rules 2013, which enter into force on 1 April 2013, were published this month. They go beyond the usual harmless tinkering to make some significant changes, many of which have already been heralded by articles in this journal. First, the small claims track limit will be raised to...
Credit Hire One Year After Bent - Gary Herring, Keoghs LLP
The method of how a court will approach the assessment of the recoverable rate of hire in cases where a credit hire claimant is not impecunious is now dealt with primarily by reference to the judgment of the Court of Appeal in Bent v Highways & Utilities [2011] EWCA Civ 1384 ('Bent 2'). Whilst arguably the main change brought about by...
The Independent Contractor Defence: A Claimant's Guide - Matthew Hodson, Farrar's Building
We frequently find in personal injury cases that there are a number of potential defendants. On a construction site there may be numerous contractors working on different aspects of the project. If an employee is injured, who do they sue? What happens if a customer is injured in a shopping centre by a security guard supplied by a separate security company?
Personal Injury and Client Acquisition - Stephen Moore, Moore Legal Technology
Stephen Moore, owner of Moore Legal Technology discusses how small law firms willing to get serious could hit the jackpot in the personal injury referral ban In April next year, the legal sector will face another huge shake-up as the ban on personal injury referrals comes into force. According to the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA)...
Fast Track Bus Accident Cases: Considering Quantum - Rushmi Sethi
An analysis of, with reference to leading case law, claims in respect of fast track bus accidents and quantum. An overall conclusion is drawn from the review of case law, after consideration of some of the key factors for assessing quantum.
Adding Insult to Injury: Time to Review Roberts v Johnstone, Again - Will Waldron QC, Exchange Chambers
When it comes to recovering the reasonable costs of necessary adapted accommodation, there must be a better way of achieving justice for the catastrophically injured then the current system provides for...
Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme 2012 - Georgina Hirsch, Devereux Chambers
On 27th November 2012 a new version of the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme came in to force. This followed one of the less publicised coalition wobbles: the new Scheme was withdrawn by the newly appointed Justice Minister Helen Grant after much criticism in debate during its final committee stage.
Safe S^x - Simon Readhead QC, 1 Chancery Lane
The New Year brings with it important news from Australia for employees in the UK - particularly those considering having s^x in motel bedrooms. This unfortunate "on the job" injury raises important questions - which will be of interest to personal injury lawyers in the UK - about the types of activities which can properly be said to arise out of or in the course of employment.
Is the Worst Still to Come for Pi Lawyers? - Richard Coulthard, Michael Lewin Solicitors
It's time that we Personal Injury lawyers face the fact that we are not very popular. The insurance industry has done a very thorough job of portraying PI Lawyers as greedy, unscrupulous ambulance chasers.
Owing a Duty of Care on the Pitch - John van der Luit-Drummond
Examining the history of damages awarded for negligence on the Football pitch.
Work Related Asthma in Healthcare Professionals - Tracey Graham, Slater & Gordon LLP
In January 2012 Occupational and Environmental Magazine published an article concluding that healthcare professionals are at risk of developing work related asthma from exposure to cleaning substances. Work related...
Work Harder for Less - Andrew Prynne QC, Temple Garden Chambers
Third-party funding will become an increasingly tempting option for litigators post-Jackson but it will put them under greater financial pressure
Torture by Proxy: Family Allegedly Rendered by the Uk to Gaddafi Accepts Settlement - Anna Crowther, Leigh Day & Co
In March 2004 Mr Sami al-Saadi, his wife and their four young children were forced aboard an Egyptian aircraft in Hong Kong and rendered to Libya where, as a former opponent of the Gaddafi regime, Mr al-Saadi knew that he and his family faced imminent danger.
Are Counsel's Doodles Privileged? - Simon Readhead QC, 1 Chancery Lane
Do you doodle in meetings? Should you doodle in meetings? There is both good news and bad. The good news is that doodling may be good for you! A study done by the University of Plymouth and published in Applied Cognitive Psychology suggests that doodling actually helps improve...
Royal College of Surgeons Publishes Landmark Document on Professional Standards for Cosmetic Practice - Rebecca Richardson, Hardwicke
The Royal College of Surgeons (RCS) has published a landmark document setting out professional standards for cosmetic practice, addressing the widespread lack of regulation of all aspects of the industry.
Summary of Recent Cases, February 2013
Here is a summary of the recent notable court cases over the past month.
PI Practitioner, February 2013
Each issue a particular topic is highlighted, citing some of the useful cases and other materials in that area. This month: Recovering the costs of an inquest in subsequent civil proceedings.
PI Travel Law, Edited by Katherine Deal, 3 Hare Court
Sea-Change to Passenger Rights? - Asela Wijeyaratne, 3 Hare Court
December 2012 saw the entry into force of Regulation (EU) No 1177/2010 (on 18 December 2012) and Regulation (EC) No 392/2009 (on 31 December 2012). Regulation (EU) No 1177/2010 concerns the rights of persons with disability or reduced mobility and the obligations of carriers and terminal operators in the event of interrupted travel with respect to transport by sea and inland waterway.
Medico-Legal Articles, Edited by Dr Hugh Koch
Assessment of Cognitive Impairment Following Road Traffic Accidents - Dr Karen Addy, Clinical Neuropsychologist
Following road traffic accidents patients will often report cognitive symptoms such as problems with concentration, memory loss, fatigue, attention etc. whilst many psychiatric and psychological disorders can cause cognitive symptoms were there is a suspicion of a brain injury neuropsychological assessment...
Marketing for Solicitors
Marketing your Practice: Do Others See Us as We See Ourselves? Do We Appear as We Wish to? Time to Spring Clean Our Image? - Jenny Cotton, Mortons Marketing
Has your practice reviewed its internal and external image recently? What do your contacts know about your practice? think about what they know? and most importantly what do they believe about yourselves? Facts can be updated quickly, level of profile can be lifted by...