Are insurance companies passing your details to personal injury lawyers without permission?

27 June 2011

Former Demon Headmaster and MP sort, Jack Straw, is demanding a reform of the motor insurance industry by stamping his feet and shooting his mouth off about something he thinks he's onto.

He reckons that says insurers are getting paid for referring clients' details to personal injury lawyers without asking us first. He's saying that the wild cost of insurance is caused by referrals to personal injury lawyers, and basically, he thinks its 'a racket'.

He says, with his oddly brown teeth: "It's become a huge racket. The insurance companies are complicit in this. They should and could have said this is outrageous."

He added that senior executives from two of the largest insurers in the UK have admitted that it was the industry's "dirty secret".

"They said, 'If we don't do it everyone else will be doing it'. The garages, the recovery firms - even the police are selling on this information."

This suggestion is backed up by a report from the Transport Select Committee who have also detailed how companies are paid referral fees for giving lawyers the names of people involved in crashes. As a result of this, premiums are going up despite the fact that the roads are safer and theft is down.

Have you had an accident and suddenly found yourself being harassed by injury lawyer types constantly on the phone at you? Have a gripe in the comments.

TOPICS:   Investments   Insurance   Scams

18 comments

  • Ian
    Yeah, I've been getting text messages trying to persuade me to release the hounds. I reported seeing a driver collide with my (parked) car to Lothian and Borders finest and then made a claim through Elephant. It was also repaired at a bodywork shop, and it was squabbled over in court, so no idea who sold me out. Incidentally Lothian and Borders police were first class in dealing with it. Anyway, not sure how much personal injury I'm due. I did bite my lip quite hard.
  • Jon B.
    I've been getting text messages for a while now and I don't have the mobile number linked with any insurance company, although I have used it on price comparison websites so I'd put money on it being them selling on details, as opposed to the actual insurance companies.!
  • Joe W.
    Yes I too have had an accident, in feburary actually, and I have recieved numerous texts and call's from a Personal Injuries firm asking if I want the free help of their proffesionnal lawyers. I am very, very careful who I give me details to, and as I have a company phone, any time I am wary of where my number ends up (such as insurance comparisons, online forms etc) I enter my company number, not my personnal. So for me, since my accident sparked this and the only people that know I had an accident are the insurance company, I would like to know how much they sold my number for, and for me to have the amount credited off the stupidly high insurance premium they now want off me (jump from £900 to £2800 for a third party crash that caused no damage to my car, maybe £200-£300 to the other as the bump was about 10mph) Government or similar need to actually start looking into these insurance companies and their way of 'working'
  • Joe W.
    Addition to the above post I made, the insurance company is Co-op Insurance Services. Of course, I found insurance premiums of around £1800 else where, but thats how much CIS wanted from me. That's a big jump. AND they sold my details for more profit...
  • Simon l.
    I had this after an accident last year - my cat was stopped and the other scraped my car doing 10mph - the personal injury jerk, from up north somewhere, kept trying to get me to claim, I kept telling him there was nothing wrong and it would be fraud if I claimed, he persisted After the 4th call, I told him he would need to make a personal injury claim if he kept calling me!
  • zeddy
    http://www.parkers.co.uk/News/News/Parkers-calls-for-ban-on-referral-fees/
  • Alexis
    Would be interesting to demand compensation from your insurer and maybe take them to small claims. Even if only for a nominal sum for harassment, such as £100.
  • Alexis
    Actually, since they make £600 from a referral I would be tempted to stick £600 in the Letter Before Action.
  • shutsh
    In additional to looking at the insurance companies, there also needs to be an investigation into the solicitors firms who work for these companies. Solicitors Code of Conduct (Rule 9, p.14, (b)) prohibits solicitors working with "an introducer who makes unsolicitated approaches in person or by telephone." They can't be ignorant to how the "referrers" get their information, so how many solicitors are breaching their own code of conduct, and bring the profession into disrepute?
  • Dick
    Why doesn't the government sell this information? It may help clear the defecit. Soemone will do it anyway, so it may as well be them. Similarly, the NHS could sell records of people coming into A&E.
  • Ian
    In typical style, the insurers are moving at glacial speed to remunerate me. I've had 7 texts from personal injury people in the time that I've had 1 email from the insurers. I only wish they shared the tenacity of the personal injury lawyers lust for compensation....
  • Ian
    YES! I am with Admiral. I had a bad accident on the motorway, and before my car had even been collected off the third lane, I had already received a text from a claims company, and a phone call.
  • charitynjw
    Ouch! Damn! Just got a whiplash injury by reading this thread. Who do I sue?
  • mike r.
    my car was parked outside my house when it was hit by another car in june 2009,i was in the house.now i am getting phonecalls every day to claim for injury.i think it is all wrong that insurance companys can sell on your details,then blame injury claims is the reason to put premiums up when they are causing it in the first place.
  • Sarah
    I'm now up to 30 calls from these random companies pestering me about a claim for something that was my faultin the first place! I just can't seem to get rid of them! I have asked them to remove me from their databases, I have asked to speak to managers, and now I've just had the indignity of having one guy hanging up when I was trying to get my name removed from their list!!! Not only that, when I asked to speak to his manager I got lies, lies, lies - 'I don't have a manager', I mean, who doesn't have a manager? ...then when I challenged him on that, it was 'I am the manager' so I asked to speak to his manager, who I was told was away. I challenged him on that and then he hung up on me!!!! So, it's OK for them to harrass me day and night but when I want something more from them I get hung up on! SOMETHING HAS TO BE DONE! This is outrageous behaviour and there HAS to be a way that, as a consumer, I can get my name removed from whatever database my name is on. If anyone knows of a government body that I can complain too, please let me know. I really think that 30 unsolicited calls is now getting a bit much and it's time to take further action to have them cease and desist.
  • anne
    Used several car insurance comparison sites yesterday, he ho - received 3 ppi & energy dumb phone today. Have previously purchased BT call blocking phones for home. So it's now started on mobile. Time for something to be done. Such an invasion of your privacy. BT phones do work, but can't seem to get round blocking no's on mobile.
  • Layfield W.
    without permission passing client information and document to an injury lawyer is unauthentic task for the insurance company. without court notice or client agreement they don't do it. insurance company must inform client about the lawyer and sharing info. according to information law it's illegal.
  • Annoyed
    I am getting annoyed with these calls, both on my home number and mobile number. Relating to a non-fault accident with my car when MY PARTNER was driving it under HIS insurance policy. We had to go to court to prove innocence and won. This was back in 2013 and now I get pestered as apparently running out of time to claim this imaginary money that's been set aside for us....... I am tempted to take my ex-insurer to court as all these companies who call are very clever in the fact they have all the details even down to the name of the other party but they all think I was driving - hence how I know it is my ex-insurer who have passed on my contact details WITHOUT MY CONSENT!

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