The Lord Chancellor will announce later today that the first review of the personal injury discount rate under the Damages Act 1996 as amended by the Civil Liability Act 2018 will start on 19 March 2019.
The Act requires that the Lord Chancellor must conduct the review and determine whether the rate should be changed or kept unchanged within 140 days of and including the date on which the review starts: that is, on or before 5 August 2019.
Although long expected, this news will be greeted with cautious optimism by Personal Injury practitioners who have been giving advice and drafting schedules and counter-schedules of loss for the last few months in a vacuum. The only thing that seems likely is that the rate will change from the unsustainable, and unrealistic, -0.75.
In my view, the rate is likely to be pegged between 0.50-1.00 – much more accurately reflecting the reality of lives.