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Jackson recommendations “could be against the law”

The Ministry of Justice (MoJ) is consulting on recommendations to make personal injury claimants pay some of their legal fees out of their compensation. But, if implemented, leading counsel’s opinion, obtained by the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers suggests that the changes may restrict access to justice for claimants who have suffered serious or catastrophic injury and could be unlawful.

The Government’s proposals may be unlawful because, they could be contrary to Articles 6 and 14 of the European Convention on Human Rights, as disabled people could be denied access to justice because, in Counsel’s opinion, “As presently drafted, they seem to us to place claimants who have suffered the most complex personal injury at a particular disadvantage as regards their prospects of securing adequate legal representation, financial protection from adverse costs consequences, and adequate compensation to permit a return to active daily life.”

The MoJ’s consultation, which follows recommendations made by Lord Justice Jackson in his review of civil litigation costs, is open until February 14.

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