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Insurers to fight bogus whiplash claims

04 July 2007

  • New tool for insurers ready by end of 2007
  • Will help identify fraudulent claims
  • Could cut £1 billion compensation bill by 20%

Insurers now have a new tool to help them identify fraudulent whiplash claims

Insurers will soon have a new tool to help them identify bogus whiplash compensation claims.

Motor industry research centre Thatcham believes between 10% and 20% of the claims currently made will be immediately defensible, thanks to a computer system that uses crash-test data from various speeds to gauge when injuries are likely to have occurred.

Thatcham says the tool won't be available to motorists to convince insurance companies that their claims are genuine, but a reduction in premiums is possible if payouts in fraudulent cases were stopped.

Currently, insurers pay £1 billion a year in whiplash cases - the most common cause of compensation claims - which add around £40 to every insurance policy as a result.

Defend against whiplash
Thatcham research shows that 72% of head restraints are not properly positioned to limit whiplash injuries in low-speed collisions. Here's how to set your restraint correctly:

• Raise the restraint up so that its top is in line with the top of your head.

• Pull the restraint forward so that it is as close to the back of your head as possible.

• Refer to Thatcham's New Car Whiplash Ratings here when considering your next new car. Less than a third of new cars on sale received a 'good' rating from Thatcham in the 2007 survey.

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