’The outcome risks undermining the intention of the whiplash reforms,’ says association

The ABI has said it is “disappointed” by the Supreme Court’s ruling on mixed injury appeals and that the decision ”will only increase the cost pressures” insurers face.

Yesterday (25 March 2024), the court dismissed insurers’ appeals on two test cases – Rabot vs Hassam and Briggs v Laditan – with it supporting the decision made by the Court of Appeal in January 2023.

This means that people with mixed injury claims can claim full common law compensation for their non-whiplash injuries at the same time as the statutory tariff payment for whiplash.

The ABI – on behalf of the insurance industry – argued that this would open the door to the “double counting of injuries” and, in turn, increase the level of awarded compensation.

Following the Supreme Court’s ruling, a spokesperson from the association said: “We’re disappointed by the Supreme Court’s decision to uphold the Court of Appeal’s judgement on the mixed injuries test case. We supported these test cases in the interest of clarity for claimants and defendants alike.

“Given the dissenting judgement from the Master of the Rolls in the Court of Appeal case, it was an important point of principle to take the decision to the highest court in the UK.

“The outcome risks undermining the intention of the whiplash reforms.”


The whiplash regulations were introduced in 2021 and formed part of the Civil Liability Act 2018.

As part of this, the Official Injury Claims (OIC) portal was setup in May 2021 to reduce the number and cost of whiplash claims in England and Wales.

While whiplash soft tissue injuries are aligned to specific compensation values via a tariff table, mixed injury claims comprising of whiplash and additional injuries are not.

LV= General Insurance said it was seeing the proportion of mixed injury claims increasing to higher levels than before the reforms.

”We feel [the Supreme Court] outcome and the original intent of these reforms has been watered down, as the level of award for a mixed injury claim remains close to the sum that would have been awarded before the whiplash reforms came into force,” Michael King, technical claims director at LV= General Insurance, said.

And the ABI added that the Supreme Court ruling “will only increase the cost pressures” insurers are facing, which could drive up premiums as a result.

ABI figures showed that the average motor insurance premium paid in the UK increased by 12% between 1 October and 31 December 2023 – up from £562 a year to £627.

In turn, the association unveiled a new action plan to combat steep rises in premiums.

“Motor insurers are doing all they can to keep prices as competitive as possible, but this will only increase the cost pressures they’re facing,” an ABI spokesperson said.

“We’ll work with our members to consider the impact of the judgement alongside the steps we’ve already set out through our 10-point roadmap for tackling motor insurance costs.”