No win, no fee; no stork, no baby

Evidence from Berlin shows a clear correlation between the human birth rate and the stork population, thus proving that storks bring babies. Or is this faulty logic?

I wonder if we can find some other examples. Step forward the Access to Justice Action Group (AJAG) and the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL). Here are a few extracts from their recent press release following their “independent research” on Jackson implementation:

“Independent research … highlights the importance of ‘no win, no fee’ agreements to the general public, and throws a direct challenge to the Government’s proposed legislation to reduce access to justice by dramatically restricting ‘no win, no fee’ agreements.

The research … calculates that almost three million people have used this method to make a legal claim in the last five years. The vast majority of those are people suffering from personal injury.

Proposed restrictions to ‘no win no fee’ will mean the facility will cease to be an option for many claimants, and the research reveals that, due to their income, most won’t be able to fund their claims any other way”

Denise Kitchener, chief executive of APIL, was quoted:

“Under the Government proposals for ‘no win, no fee’ a huge number of people will lose their right to the compensation to which they are entitled, and which they need and deserve, as they will not be able to afford the legal help they need to bring a claim.”

It’s the staggering lack of any logical connection between the research undertaken and the conclusion reached that really takes the biscuit.

We can only assume that this press release is targeted at those who do not understand the current system and are unaware of the Government’s proposals.

The research shows that a lot of people have brought personal injury claims using ‘no win, no fee’ agreements. The research shows that many of them are on relatively low incomes. The “won’t be able to fund their claims any other way” means that they could not pay their solicitors’ ordinary fees in the event a claim was lost.

‘No win, no fee’ agreements are not about to be banned. In future, a successful claimant will pay any success fee out of their damages rather than the unsuccessful defendant. There was no research into what this would mean, if anything, for the number of claims brought. I just hope APIL members present their clients’ personal injury claims somewhat more convincingly then they are presenting the anti-Jackson case.

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