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10% Increase in Awards of General Damages from 1st April 2013

Simmons v Castle [2012] EWCA Civ 1039

On 26th July 2012 the Court of Appeal took the opportunity to give notice as to how the increase in general damages, recommended by Sir Rupert Jackson in his final report on Civil Litigation Costs, would take effect. Paragraph 20 of the Judgment stated that:

“Accordingly, we take this opportunity to declare that, with effect from 1 April 2013, the proper level of general damages for (i) pain, suffering and loss of amenity in respect of personal injury, (ii) nuisance, (iii) defamation and (iv) all other torts which cause suffering, inconvenience or distress to individuals, will be 10% higher than previously. It therefore follows that, if the action now under appeal had been the subject of a judgment after 1 April 2013, the proper award of general damages would be 10% higher than that agreed in this case, namely £22,000 rather than £20,000.”

Simmons v Castle [2012] EWCA Civ 1288

After the original Judgment was handed down the Association of British Insurers made applications effectively asking the Court of Appeal to reconsider its position and limit the 10% increase to cases where the Claimant’s funding arrangement is agreed after 1st April 2013.

The Court heard submissions from the interested parties (the ABI, APIL and PIBA) and concluded that it would, as it were, replace the old paragraph 20 with a new one:

“Accordingly, we take this opportunity to declare that, with effect from 1 April 2013, the proper level of general damages in all civil claims for (i) pain and suffering, (ii) loss of amenity, (iii) physical inconvenience and discomfort, (iv) social discredit, (v) mental distress, or (vi) loss of society of relatives, will be 10% higher than previously, unless the claimant falls within section 44(6) of LASPO. It therefore follows that, if the action now under appeal had been the subject of a judgment after 1 April 2013, then (unless the claimant had entered into a CFA before that date) the proper award of general damages would be 10% higher than that agreed in this case, namely £22,000 rather than £20,000”.

The change means that the 10% increase will be applied to all judgments given after 1st April 2013, unless the CFA was entered into before that date.

December 4, 2012 · Editorial Team · Comments Closed
Posted in: News