Stephen Ashcroft advises claimant lawyers to obtain financial analysis from experts to protect themselves against professional indemnity issues

It is hard to believe that it is almost 20 years since the first structured settlement, Kelly v Dawes, was implemented, in 1989. The Premier League did not exist and few people had heard of Tony Blair. At the time, it was regarded as the biggest change to the court system for many years – the first time damages had been awarded on anything other than a lump sum basis.

Since then, there has been a raft of supportive legislation designed to encourage their usage, such as the Finance Acts 1995 and 1996, and the Damages Act 1996.

However, structured settlements remained very much in the minority, perhaps with the exception of clinical negligence awards. The National Health Service Litigation Agency was an enthusiastic proponen...

Jean Yves


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