By: 3 July 2014

The Motor Accident Solicitors Society (MASS) has described the latest Transport Select Committee report on fraud as a "sensible blueprint for tackling fraud".


MASS has said that it agrees with a number of points laid out in the report, called Driving premiums down: fraud and the cost of motor insurance, which outlined a number of areas that it believes need to be tackled to combat fraud.


The body said that it supports the idea of obtaining psychological reports via a medical accreditation process and approved the recommendation that treatment should only be provided where it was confirmed by an appropriately qualified independent medical expert. It also said that it broadly supported the Government’s intention to ban inducements as a matter of principle, but was keen to work with the Ministry of Justice to ensure that its introduction did not impinge on other legitimate activity.


MASS also said that it had serious concerns that a catch-all definition of ‘fundamental dishonesty’ would lead to "a wide range of unintended consequences and remove the existing discretion that judges have to clamp down on clear cases of fraud" and said the Committee was right to caution against hasty legislation in this area.


It did however, reiterate its opposition to a rise in the small claims limit, which the Committee has endorsed, saying that it would damage access to justice and increase claims management company activity.


“The Committee has produced another thoughtful and valuable contribution to the debates around how to tackle the problems of fraudulent or exaggerated claims," said Craig Budsworth, the chair of MASS.


“As we do, the Committee wants to see progress, but only after careful consideration of all the available data and understanding all the impacts that the reforms may have. We shall continue to work with the Committee, the Ministry of Justice and all other stakeholders to combat fraud at every level and to find workable solutions to these sometimes complex problems.”