You are here: Home - Insurance - News - Understanding -

Government to clamp down on bogus holiday sickness epidemic

0
Written by: Paloma Kubiak
13/04/2018
The government has announced it will close a loophole which has helped fuel the soaring trend of Brits making bogus holiday sickness claims, potentially raising travel costs for all.

Holiday sickness claim pay-outs will be “brought under control”, the Ministry of Justice has announced.

In the coming weeks, package holiday claims will come under the fixed recoverable costs regime. This means tour operators will pay prescribed costs depending on the value of the claim and length of proceedings, making defence costs predictable, and helping them to challenge bogus claims.

Currently, legal costs in overseas package travel claims haven’t been controlled which means costs for tour operators can spiral compared with the damages claim.

This claims epidemic has led many operators to settle out of court, rather than challenge them.

The uncontrolled costs has also empowered claims management companies to encourage tourists to pursue holiday sickness compensation, with touts reportedly operating in European resorts.

Last year it was revealed there was a 500% increase in the number of compensation claims for food poisoning since 2013. In 2013, the figure stood at around 5,000 claims, according to the Association of British Travel Agents (ABTA), rising to around 35,000 claims in 2016, despite the fact that reported incidence of illness in resorts had actually declined in recent years.

The epidemic has also sparked concerns that the high number of claims raises the prospect of higher travel costs for British tourists, as well as damaging the nation’s reputation.

It is expected the curb on costs will be in place before the next summer holiday season.

Justice Minister, Rory Stewart, said: “Claiming compensation for being sick on holiday, when you haven’t been, is fraud.

“This damages the travel industry and risks driving up costs for holidaymakers.

“This behaviour also tarnishes the reputation of British people abroad. That is why we are introducing measures to crack down on those who engage in this dishonest practice.”

Since October 2017, four couples were either sentenced or ordered to pay significant legal costs by the court after making false package holiday sickness claims. These cases were private prosecutions brought by tour operators Thomas Cook, TUI and Red Sea Holidays.

There are 0 Comment(s)

If you wish to comment without signing in, click your cursor in the top box and tick the 'Sign in as a guest' box at the bottom.

Are you a first-time buyer looking for a mortgage?

Look no further, get the help you need by searching for your perfect mortgage

Five ways to get on the property ladder without the Bank of Mum and Dad

A report suggests the Bank of Mum and Dad is running low on funds. Fortunately, there are other options for st...

The essential Your Money guide to the April 2018 tax changes

As we head into the 2018/19 tax year, a number of key changes take place to existing policies while some new i...

A guide to switching energy provider

All you need to know about switching from one energy supplier to another.

What will happen if rates change

How your finances will be impacted by a rise in interest rates.

Regular Savings Calculator

Small regular contributions can build up nicely over time.

Online Savings Calculator

Work out how your online savings can build over time.

Having a baby and your finances: seven top tips

We’re guessing the Duchess of Cambridge won’t be fretting about maternity pay or whether she’ll still be...

Protecting family wealth: 10 tips for cutting inheritance tax

Inheritance tax - sometimes known as 'death tax' - can cause even more heartache for bereaved families. But th...

Travel insurance: Five tips to ensure a successful claim

Ahead of your summer holiday, it’s important to make sure you have the right level of travel cover or you co...

YourMoney.com Awards 2018

Now in their 21st year, our awards recognise the companies offering the best products and services to consumers

Money Tips of the Week

Read previous post:
2263778-queen-cash
Managing expectations: why is cash still king?

One of the biggest considerations to make before putting your hard-earned cash to work, is to weigh up your appetite...

Close