Posted: July 29th, 2014
Settlements of whiplash injury compensation claims could be delayed by up to three months following the introduction of the Recovery of Certain Benefits and Assistance Scheme.
The “Recovery of Certain Benefits and Assistance Scheme” is a new initiative due to be introduced on Friday 1st August which will enable the Department of Social Protection to recover welfare benefits paid to plaintiffs that directly relate to their whiplash accident.
Although likely to only affect the most seriously injured plaintiffs (due to the category of welfare benefit that is included in the new scheme), insurance companies will have to apply to the Department of Social Protection for a statement indicating the value of applicable welfare payments paid to the plaintiff over the previous five years.
The insurance company will then deduct the appropriate amount from settlements of whiplash injury compensation claims, send the repayment of the welfare benefits to the Department of Social Protection, and the balance to the plaintiff. The problem of delayed settlements is caused by the procedures that are involved.
The Department of Social Protection has four weeks in which to supply the insurance company with the statement of benefits paid; after which the insurance company must send the repayment to the Department and wait for a certificate of repayment to be received before sending the balance to the injured plaintiff. Depending on the efficiency of the Department and the insurance company, settlements of whiplash injury compensation claims could be delayed by up to three months.
It is important to note that the Recovery of Certain Benefits and Assistance Scheme only applies to plaintiffs who have received Disability Allowance, Invalidity Pension, Injury Benefit, Illness Benefit, Partial Capacity Benefit or Incapacity Supplement as a direct result of their whiplash injury. Plaintiffs who have not received these benefits, will experience a much shorter delay while the Department of Social protection confirms that no deductions are to be made.
If you are not clear about the new process for settlements of whiplash injury compensation claims, you should speak with a solicitor at the first possible opportunity.
Categories: Whiplash Compensation Claims