Focus on Brain Injury | The New Serious Injury Guide

On 14 September 2015, the Serious Injury Guide came into force. This new guide has been prepared to ensure that claimants and defendants work collaboratively on cases with a potential value of £250k or more. The key parts of the guide are as follows:

  1. Positive collaborative behaviour between claimants and defendants is encouraged to ensure efficient and effective case planning.
  2. Claimants, or their representatives, are under an obligation to notify defendant’s insurers at an early stage.
  3. Defendants are under an obligation to commit to attempting to resolve liability within six months of the date they are notified of a case.
  4. Both parties are under an obligation to consider rehabilitation and interim payments at the earliest possible opportunity. 
  5. Defendants should not make formal offers to settle the case unless, and until, the parties have tried to agree an issue through dialogue and negotiation.
  6. Both parties must commit to obtaining and disclosing the relevant documents promptly. 
  7. If there are two or more defendants, they should nominate one point of contact to deal with the case.

There is an escalation process in the guide whereby if a party believes that the other party is not acting within the spirit of the code, the case will be escalated to a nominated contact point for the claimant or the defendant.

If you would like any further information about the serious injury guide, please contact partners Jonathan Betts or Colin Ettinger who are our designated points of contact for any disputes arising under the guide.

“This is an important guide that we are absolutely committed to. The guide should enable us to secure early interim payments and continue to put our clients’ rehabilitation needs at the forefront of our minds at the outset of a serious injury case. This will ensure that their quality of life and rehabilitation potential are maximised.”

Neil Whiteley, National Head of the Serious Injury Team, Irwin Mitchell

Key Contact

Neil Whiteley