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10 September 2014

FUTURE LOSS OF EARNINGS CLAIMS FOR INJURED POLICE OFFICERS … BE AWARE OF WINSOR 2

Despite its’ catchy title, most people are probably not aware of Part 2 of Mr Tom Winsor’s “Independent Review of Police Officer and Staff Remuneration and Conditions” (published 2012).

As far as I know it didn’t make any bestsellers list and nor was it featured on Richard and Judy’s Book Club.

Nevertheless it is a publication that should be of some interest to Personal Injury Practitioners.

In particular, Mr Winsor recommended:

• That all police officers should be required to complete an annual fitness test (Recommendation 37)

• That any police officer who is unable to pass the fitness test should be placed on restricted duties with full pay for up to 1 year (Recommendation 39)

• That any police officer who remains unable to pass the fitness test after 1 year should remain on restricted duties for a further year but with a reduction in pay of whichever is the lower of 8 percent or £2,922.00 (Recommendation 39)

• That any police officer who remains unable to pass the fitness test after 2 years on restricted duties should be removed from the force (Recommendation 39)

• That any police officer removed from the force due to being unable to pass the fitness test after 2 years should be offered the opportunity to apply for a lower paid civilian staff job within the force if one is available (Recommendation 39)

Following adjudication by the Police Arbitration Tribunal in December 2013, these recommendations have been adopted by the Home Secretary with the intention that they should come into force from September 2014, although as far as I am aware no formal commencement date has been announced.

Accordingly, any practitioner dealing with a claim on behalf of a significantly injured police officer should be aware that under the Winsor 2 recommendations there is a real risk that after 1 year on restricted duties their client may suffer a reduction in pay and that after 2 years on restricted duties their client’s service with the police could be terminated.

In the circumstances, it is suggested that any claim for future loss of earnings should allow for reduced loss of earnings after 1 year and should reflect that after 2 years the client is likely to be unemployed as well as disabled.


TIM GROVER

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