What are the whiplash reforms?

The government is changing the way in which 'low value' road traffic accident (RTA) claims are handled, including whiplash injuries.

From 31st May 2021, the majority of claims under the value of £5,000 will no longer be subject to ‘fast track’ rules. This means the cost of legal representation is no longer recoverable from the defendant – instead, the claimant is responsible for paying their own legal expenses.

As of 31st May, any RTA claims under the value of £5,000 will be settled without legal representation using the Official Injury Claim Service. Claimants will be able to use the free, independent online system to claim compensation without a lawyer.

The Whiplash Reforms will also necessitate medical evidence for whiplash claims. All claims submitted through the Official Injury Claim service will require supporting medical evidence before any compensation is awarded.

How much can you claim?

The amount of compensation for whiplash injuries will be fixed by law (Regulation 2(1)(1) of the Whiplash Regulations).

Duration of injury

Compensation amount

Not more than 3 months


More than 3 months, but not more than 6 months


More than 6 months, but not more than 9 months


More than 9 months, but not more than 12 months


More than 12 months, but not more than 15 months


More than 15 months, but not more than 18 months


More than 18 months, but not more than 24 months


The fixed amount may be uplifted in exceptional circumstances, at the discretion of the Court. If you think the Court should exercise its discretion, please get in touch.

If you are seriously injured, the reforms do not affect your right to be properly compensated.

If you’d like to speak to a member of our team about a road traffic accident or personal injury claim, please call 0113 232 1030 or email personal.injury@emsleys.co.uk.

Chloe Watson

Written by

Chloe Watson

Personal Injury

Chloe has worked in the legal sector since graduating from the University of Law with a Law degree in 2017 and is now in the last year of her Legal Practice Course and Masters. She has experience in Personal Injury, specialising in accidents at work, public liability claims and road traffic accidents.

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