UK Clinical Negligence Law Market

UK Clinical Negligence Law Market

Clinical Negligence Law Market
IRN Legal Market Briefing


The UK Clinical Negligence Law Market Briefing is the first edition of an annual Legal Market Briefing from IRN Research and provides an overview of the UK clinical negligence law market.

The clinical negligence market is estimated to generate almost £700 million in gross revenue for law firms in the UK, with gross revenues having risen rapidly over the past three years. Despite efforts to cut the costs of clinical negligence claims, IRN Research anticipate the market will see substantial growth over the coming five years, with gross revenue rising by more than 90% over 2016/17 to 2020/21.

An aging population and rising population are resulting in more patient treatment events, so that even with stable medical standards, more actual and potential claims are being generated. At the same time, compared with the past, patients today seem more willing to sue doctors and medical organisation for perceived breaches of duty.

The ending of legal aid for most clinical negligence cases and the changes to no win, no fee arrangements introduced in 2013/14 have helped cut the number of new cases reported but this still leaves a large number of cases to be closed each year. Moreover, the damages awarded in legal cases are tending to rise, with obstetric cases the prime cause of the increase. Costs are rising because of longer life expectancy, rising costs of medical treatments, rising legal costs and the growing time it takes to settle cases. Legal costs represent almost 40% of NHS payments on clinical negligence cases and the share taken by legal costs is rising, despite most cases never resulting in formal court proceedings.

The briefing (39pp, PDF), is available directly from IRN Research, priced at £180. UK sterling price is plus VAT so total price is £216.

The UK Clinical Negligence Law Market Briefing is one of a series of briefings produced each year with others covering Commercial Law, Conveyancing, Personal Injury, Wills & Probate, Medico-Legal & Insurance Services, Family Law and Maritime & Shipping Law. Further details and order details at:

Legal Analytics

IRN Research has partnered with Premonition AI to offer analysis of legal decisions in the UK High Courts. Premonition has developed systems to read all cases and group similar ones together under standard case types. These are then mapped to general case types in other courts, enabling clients to map litigation to claims in their specialist areas. See

IRN Research


Established in 1991, IRN Research is a market research consultancy with a particular focus on the legal services market. We offer a range of bespoke research services, on an ad-hoc and continuous basis, to law firms and suppliers to the sector. These services include client satisfaction surveys, market studies and competitor intelligence, client industry reports, and strategic studies.

IRN Research, 60 Eastern Green Road, Coventry, CV5 7LH, United Kingdom
Tel: +44(0)7905 239599. Email: URL:

Table of Contents


5) A lucrative and rapidly growing market for law firms
5)Case volumes driven by growing patient numbers and changing 5)social attitudes
5)CN costs driven by increasing award values and rising legal costs
6)It’s a relative small market in terms of the number of operators


7) Abbreviations


8) Four main market participants
8) It’s a market in two halves
9) Clinical negligence indemnity cover


11) Obstetrics is the main driver of claim value
12) With some obstetric cases the only CN cases now funded by legal aid
13) The DoH proposes a rapid resolution and redress scheme (RRR) to cut obstetric costs
13) Greater volume of work for GPs
13) Patients are more willing to sue
14) Awards are getting larger
16) And changes to the Ogden Rate increase then decrease damage awards
16) Rising claims leading to rising indemnity costs
17) So the Government proposes a new indemnity scheme to cut indemnity costs
17) The current system encourages high litigation costs despite most claims never getting to court
19) With litigation costs especially high for lower value claims
21) Leading to calls to introduce fixed recoverable costs into CN cases


23) Overview

23) A different picture in the market for claimants and defendants
26) Selected Law Firms – Profiles


28} Around 18,000 cases

28) NHS clinical negligence claims account for the main bulk of CN claims
31) Legal costs represent almost 40% of NHS payments
32) Most claimants fund their legal actions on a no win, no fee basis
33) Medical Indemnity Organisations
33) Clinical Negligence Legal Revenue


36) A market set for continued growth


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *