Update to the JC Guidelines

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03 April, 2024

Claire Opacic

The 17th edition of the JC Guidelines has now been released. Since the first edition in 1992 these guidelines have been the first port of call for valuing general damages in any personal injury claim. Unsurprisingly the figures in the new edition have increased since the previous version. The introduction section to the guidelines acknowledges that there has been a dramatic rise in inflation since the previous edition and as such the figures utilised have been uplifted by reference to the Retail Prices Index. For an indication of the impact this may make, the bracket for a 3 month back injury is now up to £2990, compared to up to £2450 in the previous version, whilst a severe complex regional pain syndrome award has increased from £52,500-£84,010 up to £64,070 - £102,520. The editors have however included a reminder that the guideline figures quoted in the latest edition may still need to be increased further by the appropriate index for inflation between August 2023 and the date of any assessment of damages.

Aside from inflation, the main changes to note relate to abuse claims. In the 16th edition of the guidelines a new subcategory of psychiatric injury to cover awards made to victims of sexual abuse was introduced. It is worth noting that, following a small cluster of decisions concerning damages for sexual abuse, including image-based abuse, adjustments have been made to the brackets for those injuries as well as the figures within the range.

Forbes comment - Following the publication of the new Guidelines it would be sensible for the reserves in any live personal injury claim to be reviewed and updated to ensure that the figures estimated reflect the new brackets applicable, particularly in any matter in which you are seeking to obtain Part 36 protection. If you have any queries about how these changes may affect you and your claim, please do not hesitate to contact us.

For more information contact Claire Opacic in our Insurance department via email or phone on 01618308817. Alternatively send any question through to Forbes Solicitors via our online Contact Form.

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