The Motor Insurers Bureau (MIB) has laid out a draft “customer journey” for those bringing claims through the new whiplash portal from next April.
It said the model – which has not been finalised – would help “shape the technology build and the sequence of the online pages for the service”.
Stakeholders were told on Friday: “It is aimed at creating a good experience for customers… The customer journey model illustrates the different paths that are in consideration and, while not final, may help professional users with their internal project preparations.”
The key stages where liability is admitted relate to both represented and unrepresented claimants would be: register, create claim, assign claim and submit liability, organise medical and instruct provider, agree medical report, make and review offer, and issue compensation payment.
Solicitors for represented claimants would source medical reports as now; the Ministry of Justice has recently closed a consultation on arrangements for unrepresented litigants.
Where unrepresented claimants have received a full liability denial or are unhappy to accept a part-liability decision and/or what they have been offered to settle the claim, they could pursue ADR.
“The process will take the form of an independent review exercise, managed by an appointed service provider,” the MIB said.
This is presumably what Ministry of Justice spokesman Lord Keen revealed earlier this year would be a “low-cost paper-based system, paid for by the compensator, [enabling] unrepresented claimants to seek an independent view from a qualified expert on key elements of their claim”.
The MIB said claimants would consider the “dispute resolution outcome” and could then, if necessary, prepare a claim pack for court proceedings.
The map does not expand on how the claim would be progressed if it did go to court, and references the need for court approval where there are protected parties without explaining how that would be achieved either.
The MIB said a contact centre would be available to help claimants who do not have access to, or cannot use, the online service.
Over the summer, the MIB – which said it was developing the system using an “iterative and agile approach” – will host a ‘show and tell’ session for stakeholders to see the elements of the journey that have already been built.