Periodical Payments for Future Pecuniary Loss in Personal Injury Cases
(HKLRC Consultation Paper)
On 25 April 2018, the Law Reform Commission’s Periodical Payments for Future Pecuniary Loss in Personal Injury Cases Sub-committee released a consultation paper to invite public views on whether the court should be given, by way of legislation, the power to make periodical payment orders (PPOs) in respect of damages for future pecuniary loss in personal injury cases.
The purpose of the consultation paper is to identify the problems of the current law and practices in assessing damages, in particular, future pecuniary losses in personal injury cases, and whether reform is needed to allow periodical payments for future pecuniary loss to be awarded, and if so, to make recommendations for reform as appropriate.
The Sub-committee has studied the experiences from other jurisdictions, such as UK, Ireland, US, Singapore and other European countries to provide guidance on the consideration as to the desirability and viability of introducing relevant legislation for Hong Kong.
The Sub-committee wishes to highlight different aspects of concern and to gauge the sentiment of the public and stakeholders on the issues involved by inviting comments on several open-ended questions.
In the consultation paper, the Sub-committee invites the opinion of the public as to whether there is a need for a mechanism to set the discount rate at appropriate periods inclusive of who or which authority should be empowered to set the discount rate. Public views on whether the Chief Justice or any other person or body should be empowered to fix this discount rate and to conduct periodic revision of such rate are also sought.
The major question to be consulted is whether, as a matter of principle and notwithstanding the need for further exploration as to various aspects of operational feasibility, the court should be given, by way of legislation, the power to make periodical payment orders in respect of damages for future pecuniary loss in personal injury cases.
Subject to the above question, the Sub-committee invites submissions on some key issues including:
(i) Whether the court should be given, by way of legislation, the power to make PPOs in respect of damages for future pecuniary loss in personal injury cases?
(ii) What mechanism should be adopted for the formulation and promulgation of the discount rate?
(iii) What factors and limitations, if any, should be imposed on the court’s power to award and review PPOs?
(iv) What are the circumstances for reviewing PPOs and related contingencies, and whether the current regime of awarding damages should co-exist with a PPO regime?
(v) Whether the court should take into account the security, funding options and suitability of a paying party before making a PPO?
The Sub-committee would welcome views, comments and suggestions on any issues discussed in the consultation paper. The consultation period will last till 24 August 2018.
|Press Release (PDF) (MS Word)|
|Executive Summary (PDF) (MS Word)|
|Consultation Paper (PDF) (MS Word)|