Will common sense prevail? Parliament to debate excluding cyclists and pedestrians from sweeping personal injury reforms.

Posted Apr 12, 2018.

In a motion tabled by Labour MP Catherine West – whose constituency is Hornsey and Wood Green – MP’s are being asked to sign a Parliamentary Motion, a formal proposal for further discussion, debate or decision on a specific topic. The motion will request that the Government remove vulnerable road users (VRUs) from the recent  Civil Liability Bill, which includes sweeping reforms to personal injury law that many feel will be unfair and detrimental to injured people.

The Motion reads:

“That this House notes the Government’s publication of the Civil Liability Bill; supports Ministers’ intention to reduce fraudulent and frivolous claims; expresses concern that vulnerable road users (VRUs), including cyclists, pedestrians, horse riders and motorcyclists, will be swept up within the scope of the Bill and the broader personal injury reform package, despite there being no evidence that non-fault road traffic accident injuries suffered by VRUs include whiplash; further notes that almost all whiplash claims are made by drivers or passengers of motor vehicles; believes that VRUs deserve the Government’s protection, as opposed to removing their rights to redress for injuries under Tort; acknowledges that under these reforms, VRUs suffering injuries below £5,000 in value will be unable to access a lawyer should they wish to pursue their rights of redress in the Courts; and urges the Government to take a pragmatic approach and remove VRUs from the scope of the reforms to ensure they remain protected on our roads.”

Catherine West was keen to highlight the need for common sense when introducing such wide-ranging changes to current law, particularly to ensure that VRU’s such as cyclist, pedestrians and children are offered appropriate support and protection should they be injured our roads. Campaign group Access to Justice, at the forefront of the fight to protect injured people from government  legal reforms, commented: 

“We never see VRUs claiming for whiplash because they never sustain these types of injuries in accidents on our roads. Neither is there any evidence that these groups submit fraudulent or frivolous claims, so it is baffling that ministers want to penalise them.”