Most of us working in the claimant personal injury market will not have been surprised by the statement from the Motor Accident Solicitors Society (MASS) announcing that the government plans to press ahead and introduce whiplash reforms in April 2019.

So now the clock is ticking on the introduction of the Civil Liability Bill, but with no details of the bill yet published, the timetable is worryingly short.

It is imperative that the new justice secretary does not roll over and take the insurance industry’s propaganda, which is fuelling these proposals, at face value.

Coming at a time when insurers report having to shrink their claims departments in response to falling claims and reduced fraud, the justice secretary must evaluate whether reform is actually needed. Reform should only be based on fact rather than the whim of the Association of British Insurers.

David Gauke must now instigate a meaningful and honest debate about what is right and wrong about how personal injury victims are treated, the way in which insurers operate and the importance of the whole sector coming together to stamp out fraud. This is, after all, long overdue.

Qamar Anwar

First4Lawyers, Huddersfield