The Association of Personal Injury lawyers has rejoined talks on extending the fixed fees regime in personal injury cases.
APIL had walked out of the talks last month in an unprecedented move for the organisation.
The Civil Justice Council is conducting a mediation process to produce industry-agreed fixed costs for all \’fast track\’ road traffic accident, industrial disease, employer\’s liability and public liability cases worth up to £25,000.
The mediation was set up at the request of Lord Justice Jackson as part of his review into the cost of civil litigation. Earlier this month, Jackson hinted that he may recommend increasing the small claims limit for personal injury cases if no deal can be reached on fixed costs. APIL opposes both the extension of fixed fees to fast track cases and any rise in the small claims limit.
APIL president John McQuater said the decision to rejoin the talks followed \’concessions\’ by the CJC. He said: \’We originally withdrew from the talks because the CJC, acting on instructions from Lord Justice Jackson, insisted that figures only would be discussed. But the CJC has now agreed to discuss matters of process.\’
APIL will now also file a final written submission to Jackson. McQuater added that his \’profound scepticism\’ about extending fixed costs remains.
Jackson\’s report is expected at the end of the year.