Insurers and their lawyers must work at gaining the trust of claimant lawyers, warned Frances McCarthy, president of the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL).
Speaking at a joint APIL and Forum of Insurance Lawyers (Foil) conference, McCarthy said: “This is partly due to the aggressive attitude taken by some insurers in the early stages of the claim.
“A denial of liability is maintained in inappropriate cases; in others, there is no response. Documents are not produced and silly questions are asked about funding arrangements, such as demanding to see the risk assessment in a conditional fee agreement case,” she added.
She said the cases of Callery and Sarwar had brought much needed certainty to the issue of funding, although there was still a great deal to resolve.
Foil president Andrew Parker said personal injury litigation had changed forever and it was vital everyone embraced the changes.
“Trust people as individuals and change your approach,” Parker said. “Our differences will be surmountable if we keep talking and if we cannot resolve all of the issues, the courts need to help resolve them.”