Servicemen and women injured during combat will be shut out of the justice system under new Government plans to widen the scope of combat immunity to stop claims of negligence coming to court.
Under the proposals, combat immunity – which provides an exemption from legal liability for members of the armed forces and the government – would apply to all claims brought by those in combat, even when failings occurred far from the battlefield.
Below are my thoughts and suggestions:
1 .Leave combat immunity with the courts on a case by case basis allowing for transparency in breaches of duty of care and lessons learnt, particularly in view of the MoD’s immunity from Health and Safety sanctions and the Corporate Manslaughter Act.
2. Increase the current AFCS employers pension scheme in line with court awards allowing those injured in combat to receive the same award as those on training exercises.
3. In high value cases allow independent lawyers to be instructed to advice claimants on:
Loss of career
Future aids and equipment
Discounts and actuaries
Trusts and investment
Client mental capacity and court of protection
4. The right to an appeal to the courts in the event of an undervaluation.
The MoD’s Better combat compensation consultation, closes on 23 February.