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26 January 2012

Referral Fees Contributing to High Cost of Car Insurance in Northern Ireland Says Law Society


Referral fees have contributed around £2 billion towards the increase cost of motor insurance in England and Wales according to evidence presented by the Law Society of Northern Ireland to the Committee for the Environment at the Northern Ireland Assembly today. 

Representatives from the Law Society were providing an oral briefing to the Committee on the issues surrounding the high costs of motor insurance in Northern Ireland and the processes involved in making a claim for compensation.

During their submission to the Assembly Committee the Society emphasised that the proposals on ‘Referral fees’ already passed at Westminster should be considered by the Northern Ireland Assembly as a matter of priority.

Speaking to Committee members the Society emphasised that the system for compensating victims of road traffic accidents in Northern Ireland was extremely effective, open and transparent.

Over the last number of months the Society has been working to bring forward proposals which would significantly reduce the cost of car insurance in Northern Ireland.

The Law Society has already committed itself with the introduction of its Claims Advice Service which ensures that victims of Road Traffic Accidents (RTA’S) have the choice to seek independent legal advice from a local solicitor and to arrange for a replacement vehicle and the repair of their damaged vehicle.

Speaking after the Society’s submission to the Assembly Committee, Mr Rory McShane, and former President with the Society said:

“The Law Society is grateful to the Assembly Committee for the opportunity to speak on this important consumer issue and to provide the Committee with our proposals which we believe will go some way to significantly reducing the cost of motor insurance in Northern Ireland.

We remain committed to working with Government to address the problems which exist most notably the impact of referral fees and claims management companies which we believe have contributed significantly to the high cost of car insurance in Northern Ireland”.



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