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Changing behaviours will encourage resolution

Following publication of Lord Justice Jackson’s costs review, Claire Fazan gives her take on a possible, albeit radical, future approach to clinical negligence litigation

6 September 2017

Those who have dealt with clinical negligence claims for decades have seen the same mistakes made time and time again. What is needed is not just an approach to the resolution of claims that makes the process quicker and less costly, but one which provides information to help prevent future incidents occurring.

For too long discussion about litigation reform has focused on costs, despite it being process and behaviour that ultimately drive costs. Following the publication of Lord Justice Jackson’s review in July, we must now turn our focus to process, regardless of the potential value of the claim.

The current pre-action and post-issue procedures combine to cause delay and costs which could be avoided. Parts of the process work well. Others do not. The sorts of behaviours leading to unnecessary cost and delay identified in appendix 13 of Jackson LJ’s review are n...

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