Statistics Reveal Fall in Number of Personal Injury Cases

There was a fall in the number of personal injury cases initiated in the Scottish civil courts in 2015-16, according to the latest civil justice statistics from Scotland’s Chief Statistician.

In total, 77,721 civil law cases were initiated across the Court of Session, sheriff courts and the newly established Sheriff Personal Injury Court in 2015-16 (excluding summary applications). This is a rise of 1% from the previous year but represents a decrease of 41% since the beginning of the statistical time series in 2008-09.

The number of cases initiated in the Court of Session decreased by 16% when compared to the previous year. This overall decrease was driven by a 30% decrease in the number of personal injury cases initiated in the Court of Session, as a consequence of the establishment of the Sheriff Personal Injury Court by the Courts Reform (Scotland) Act 2014. In contrast, the number of cases initiated in the sheriff courts (which accounted for 93% of all civil law cases) increased by 1%.

The number of personal injury cases initiated in the civil courts was 5% lower than in 2014-15, but the Chief Statistician highlights that the number of personal injury cases has fluctuated markedly since 2008-09. Cases resulting from a road traffic accident made up the majority of personal injury cases (56% in 2015-16).

The number of damages cases initiated decreased by 2% compared to the previous year, which apparently continues a long-term downward trend (50% decrease since 2008-09).

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