Why law firms are exiting the claimant personal injury market

legal change management

Over the past decade, Recovery First have noted a growing trend in claimant personal injury lawyers wishing to exit the market. Personal injury claims are one of the most prominent areas of litigation; so, why are law firms exiting the claimant personal injury market?

There are many reasons why law firms are exiting the claimant personal injury market, from growing competition, issues in obtaining professional indemnity insurance, and reforms to the levels of profit costs that can be recovered in certain types of cases.

It is no surprise that the legal landscape is continuously changing, with many firms wishing to make changes to their legal offerings, or adjustments to the structure of their firms to stay competitive in an everchanging industry.

Having a well-planned legal change management strategy can assist firms in ensuring they attain continuous improvement and long-term success for their firm.

An overcrowded market


The personal injury market can be highly competitive, with many law firms vying for clients and cases. Increasing competition can put pressure on personal injury firms to invest in marketing, advertising, and client acquisition strategies to maintain a steady flow of cases. If a firm finds it challenging to secure sufficient cases or feels the market is overcrowded, it may choose to exit claimant personal injury to focus on other areas of law where they see more opportunities for growth and profitability.


Professional indemnity insurance


Many personal injury solicitors are finding it difficult to obtain professional indemnity insurance (PII) The cost of PII has been increasing in recent years, and this is particularly the case for personal injury lawyers. This is due to a number of factors, including the increasing complexity of personal injury law, the rising number of claims against personal injury solicitors, and the increasing cost of litigation.

Moreover, PII is not always available for personal injury lawyers. This may be because some insurers are reluctant to insure personal injury solicitors due to the perceived high risk of claims. This can make it extremely difficult for lawyers to obtain the cover they need.


Law reforms


Since 2013, personal injury solicitors have been faced with a number of reforms, starting with the Jackson Reforms. The Jackson reforms were introduced in 2013 and made many changes to the way in which personal injury claims are handled in the UK. These reforms included the introduction of fixed costs for personal injury claims.

Fast forward to 2021 when the whiplash reforms were introduced which made a number of changes to the way whiplash claims are handled in the UK. These reforms included the introduction of a tariff system for whiplash claims. It also extended the small claims track limit for road traffic personal injury claims from £1,000 to £5,000. These reforms have severely limited the amount of profit costs a solicitor can recover from the defendant for their time spent working on these types of cases.

The Ministry of Justice have announced that they will extend the fixed recoverable costs regime in October 2023. The 2023 fixed costs extension will undoubtedly have a huge impact on the personal injury market as solicitors will be restricted in the level of costs they can recover from a defendant, reducing profits and limiting cash flow for solicitors.




With the introduction of Access to Justice in 2000, claimant personal injury became an incredibly lucrative market in England & Wales. With firms south of the border earning three to four times their counterparts north of the border for the same work, many young entrepreneurial lawyers jumped abroad the  “Wolfe gravy train” and have been very successful.

Some 23 years down the track, with a hardening market due to various legal reforms, many are simply ready to hang up their PI boots and enjoy the rewards of their hard earned labour.


How Recovery First can assist firms in exiting the personal injury market


Our unique scheme can assist those wishing to exit any legal market for any reason. 

The unique scheme offered by Recovery First is suitable for both professional advisors and law firms. Our team manage the transfer of files from start to finish; placing case files with an approved law firm so as to protect the integrity of the client’s case, whilst also maximising the value of the work in progress.  

Recovery First’s services are suitable for all types of legal work, using a simple, ongoing process with no up-front costs – to find out more click here . 

If you are considering exiting the claimant personal injury market and wish to discuss your options, please do not hesitate to contact us at Recovery First for a confidential chat.

We offer a positive solution to any law firm by helping them exit any legal market whilst remaining solvent, maintaining cash flow, and ensuring they get the most out of their files.

We will provide you with all the advice and support you need, and we guarantee 100% confidentiality for all clients.

If you would like to find out more about Recovery First’s process, feel free to get in touch with our Managing Directors on a confidential basis: David Johnstone at david.johnstone@recoveryfirst.co.uk, or 01357 440140, or Sally Dunscombe at sally.dunscombe@recoveryfirst.co.uk or 01357 440140.


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