Portholes in road ahead


Bankstone News seems to recall it was renowned Scots philosopher and economist Adam Smith who once famously observed that ‘it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God’. And speaking of passing things through implausibly restrictive apertures, there have lately been developments in the unfolding story of HMG’s whiplash porthole – see previous coverage.

You’ll no doubt recall that whip-hurt punters were finding it way too easy to claim significant sums of cash in compensation for quite-possibly-trumped-up cervical injuries, and that the government had decided to make it harder and less lucrative for them so to do. And that’s just what they’ve done.

Part One of the Curtailment of Legal Access (CLA) Act finally came into force on 31 May this year, putting a price on people’s pain with a fixed tariff of damages for various grades of whiplashedness, putting all claims worth £5k or less on a small ‘claims track’ passing (or possibly not passing) through the aforementioned porthole, and largely relieving insurers of the burdensome necessity of covering claimant lawyers’ costs.

Having effectively severed the link between claimants and claimant lawyers, the government has clearly set a premium on user-freindliness in designing its claims porthole, with the result that it really couldn’t be simpler for injured people to give up and go away. Not only must they pass through the porthole itself, they must also jump through a variety of associated hoops including a requirement to provide medical evidence of hurtness. 

Businesses like Legal Expenses Insurance (LEI) insurers may be interested to know that Bankstone Limited Ltd is one of just 24 FCA-regulated firms with the required permissions (not to mention the dark-arts type skills) to pass claims safely through the porthole. So if you are associated with such a business, and you’d like some value-added professional assistance with your porthole passage needs, please don’t hesitate to contact the aforementioned Bankstone Limited Ltd. They’re really very good!



Reliable sources of inspiration are few and far between in the world of Bankstone News.

There’s staring protractedly at the back of the outhouse door (success rate: 32.5%, roughly). There’s spending a night wandering the blasted heath above Addlington ripped to the tits on mescaline (success rate, perhaps surprisingly, 44.3%). Most reliable of all, of course, however, is the good old Daily Mail, offering a staggering 99.9% ‘guarantee’ of inspiration.

Sure enoughly, it was that very national newspaper (or, more accurately its associated website) that provided the inspiration for the story to which, Dear Reader, your gracious indulgence allowing, we shall now direct our attention.

The mendacity and cupidity of the Great British public, it seems, now constitute such a vast, irresistible and overbrimming spate of vileness, that, if it be dammed in one place (in the place of whiplash for example), it shall straightways inundate another place (that for example, most appositely as we shall see, of stress).

“Greedy lawyers,” the Mail reports tautologically, “are raking in cash” by persuading people to pretend that car accidents they’ve been in have left them feeling a bit stressed. If it’s hard for greedy insurers’ greedy medical experts to disprove whiplash, imagine the time they’ll have refuting greedy claims of stress!

Those experiencing the most stress, however, will probably be motor insurers, now faced with a terrifying new threat to their chances of ever again seeing a profit. AxA chief exec Paul Heavens confirmed that “in recent months we have started seeing more claims for stress coming through” and said he is “very worried” about it.

So it’s true. Those greedy lawyers – faced with strong indications that the greedy government is firmly backing the greedy insurance industry’s War on Whiplash are refocusing their greedy efforts on persuading greedy accident victims to put in trumped up claims for fantastical conditions such as ‘post-traumatic stress disorder’ and ‘phobic travel anxiety’, not to mention ‘loss of earrings’.

Whatever happened to keeping calm and carrying on? Could they not just buy some more earrings? (Still a bit mystified by that one, actually.) And, does this mean the UK will soon be heralded as the worldwide capital of stress?

Hopefully, the government will recognise the urgent need to outlaw post-incident stress before things get out of hand. If they won’t do it to help their friends in the world of insurance, then surely they must take action at once or risk seeing rising stress statistics ruin Davey C’s widely publicised plans to Govern Britain Happy.


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