Legal Cost Specialists

Rise in public liability claims

By on Jun 27, 2013 | 6 comments

Commenting on the shock 57% jump in public liability claims in 2012/13 an APIL press release says:

“This is the final proof, if ever proof were needed, that the compensation culture is out of control. It is inconceivable that the number of genuine claims would increase by such a staggering amount in such a short period. We urge the Ministry of Justice to clamp down on these bogus claims and all those associated with them.”

Actually, APIL said no such thing.

They did recently make a big song and dance about the modest reduction in whiplash claims. To be fair, this is in the context of the ongoing debate as to how to control rising RTA insurance with the finger being pointed as the compensation culture. Although, to put this in context, the number of RTA claims for 2012/13 is still 44% higher than in 2006/07.

So what else do the 2012/13 DWP figures show:

Clinical negligence claims – 18% increase on last year (87% increase on 2006/07)
Employers’ liability claims – 4% increase on last year (8% decrease on 2006/07)
Public liability – 57% increase on last year (107% increase on 2006/07)
RTA – 10% decrease on last year (44% increase on 2006/07)
Other – 610% increase on last year (595% increase on 2006/07)
Total – 1% increase on last year (47% increase on 2006/07)

So, even with a large drop in RTA claims, by far the largest category, the overall number of claims has still managed to increase.

But, unless I’ve missed it, I’ve seen no mention or commentary in the legal press or elsewhere as to the massive one year jump from 104,863 to 164,973 in PL claims. I can understand that APIL may not want to be highlighting these figures in the context of the compensation culture debate but surely there is a story here for someone.


  1. Are these figures for the tax years? If so, I would be interested to see how many claims were in the run up to the 1st April.

    Charles Wheatcroft

    27th June 2013

  2. Presumably this rise has gone hand in hand with a decrease in public spending on pot holes, pavement repairs etc even after multiple complaints about the same site?

    I could name a couple of London Boroughs where the number of damaged / uneven paving slabs appear to outnumber the good ones!

    Paul Williams

    27th June 2013

  3. I have to agree with PW. The roads/pavements where I live are falling apart. Is the increase in RTAs down to the shear amount of traffic on the roads now? I now get caught in traffic jams every morning in what were quiet country roads in 2006.

    Pete B

    27th June 2013

  4. well said Paul!

    Gov slashes the budget, Councils find it cheaper to meet claims than inspect and repair, claims go up, simples!

    same with NHS claims. All the rhetoric about the cost to the taxpayer – if the Gov would fund the NHS right, and those running it would take accountability (not a political statement here, read the news)there would be less claims. as Many of my clients point out, their clients would MUCH rather have been without the injury and loss, than have to go through having to claim for it


    27th June 2013

  5. all we need now is for the tories plan to get rid of the human rights act, and there will be doomsday for many costing firms, and increased competition.

    Im thinking about doing fixed fee rates of £5 for bills of costs, replies and attending hearings.

    Beat that hatchet men…

    Truly Eminent Costs Professional

    27th June 2013

  6. Absolutely agree with Paul. The amount of Council districts who have extremely deep potholes on busy roads is sickening. Plus now that awareness has been increased for claiming against this type of damage, the amount of claims will increase!

    TBI Law Accident & Injury Claims

    4th July 2013

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