NHS Litigation Authority Annual Report

Reuben Glynn, Managing Director

Reuben Glynn, Managing Director


The NHSLA have released their annual report and accounts for the year 2013/14. Some key facts and figures:


  • 22% of the clinical negligence expenditure relates to Claimant legal costs (unchanged)
  • 8% relates to Defendant’s legal costs (up to 2% from 2012/13)
  • 70% relates to damages (down by 2% from 2012/13)
  • 38% of non-clinical expenditure relates to Claimant legal costs (down by 3% from 2012/13)
  • 13% relates to Defendant’s legal costs (unchanged)
  • 49% relates to damages (up by 3% form 2012/13)

Both sets of figures exclude over £113m of expenditure incurred and transferred to the Department of Health as a result of the NHS restructure of April 2013

The number of new claims increased by 17.9% from 2012/13 to 2013/14

Costs-specific savings:

  • Costs claimed in 2013/14£259,524,426
  • Costs settled £184,514,957
  • Costs saved £74,747,620
  • Average reduction of 28.8% on settled cases
  • Average reduction of 32% on Bills assessed at court

Excludes costs claims of under £50,000 negotiated in house by NHSLA panel solicitors

Costs & Proportionality:

  • In claims of £1,000 – £10,000, costs are typically 273% of damages paid
  • In claims of £50,000 – £100,000, costs are typically 74% of damages paid
  • In claims of £1m+, costs are typically 4% of damages paid

Unclear whether this analysis relates to ‘base costs’ only or overall costs. The CPR test of proportionality is concerned with base costs only (ie excluding VAT and additional liabilities)

Obviously this is not an independent report and, as expected, is very positive about the NHSLA’s approach and success rate.  Some of the facts are particularly interesting, such as the average reduction at assessment of costs being higher than the average reduction on settlement. As ever, the savings made on legal costs are a prominent feature of the NHSLA’s annual review and we do not expect any dramatic changes to their approach in the near future.

What are your thoughts?