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Insurers are accustomed to dealing with big numbers, but we have recently passed some truly remarkable milestones in our after-the-event insurance book.

Perhaps the most striking is that cases insured under an ARAG ATE policy have now recovered more than £2 billion in damages for victims of personal injury. Behind this huge sum lie the stories of over 150,000 clients, harmed through no fault of their own, who have been able to pursue and secure compensation for their injuries.

Over the years, we have helped to recover more than £1 billion for people injured on the roads, at work or going about their everyday lives, but ARAG is probably best known for providing cover in medical negligence cases, where many of the higher profile and highest value claims are insured.

Our success in providing cover for thousands of medical malpractice claims has helped to support so many people whose lives have been suddenly and often tragically transformed, but it is typically an insurance provider’s losses that say more about the business and its approach to the market.

Mike Knight has written about one such case which ARAG has supported, over several years, all the way to the Supreme Court. While such claims are, by their very nature, exceptional, they underscore ARAG’s deep commitment to delivering access to justice, and our capacity for accepting the accompanying risks.

We also have a guest article from Ian Cohen, solicitor and director of The Cohen Consultancy, who shares his views on the benefits that mediation and other forms of ADR can bring to clinical negligence cases.

One of our most important tools in assessing and minimising risk is expertise. While the value of experts has been subjected to some attacks in recent years, both lawyers and insurers know that the quality of expert testimony can be the difference between success and failure.

That difference is highlighted in a recent case, described here by ATE Account Manager Lisa Abrahams, in which the medical evidence was critical to the success secured by one of ARAG’s partner firms, Ashtons Legal.

The importance of expert medical witnesses to both claimants and defendants in clinical negligence cases was underlined in a Law Society Gazette roundtable in which ARAG participated, over the summer. Critical as they are to both parties, it is surprising how little mention they get in the proposals currently under consideration.

The perpetual cycle of consultation and attempts to reform personal injury claims has left little opportunity to stop and assess any success they may have had. It is now ten years since the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act (LASPO) was passed, but the parts of the landmark legislation concerned with civil litigation have undergone almost constant tinkering, ever since.

Like many of the solicitors we work with, ARAG has endured and adapted to this continuously shifting landscape for more than 15 years. While we do view our success as an achievement, recovering £2 billion for the victims of injury is just a milestone on what we always hope is a widening path to access to justice.

Disclaimer - all information in this article was correct at time of publishing.