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Health and Social Care (Community Health and Standards) Act 2003

Section 156: Review of certificates

333.Section 156 provides for internal review of certificates.Subsection (1) requires the authority to review a certificate if, after it has been issued, a finding of contributory negligence is either made by a court under the Law Reform (Contributory Negligence) Act 1945 or its equivalent outside Great Britain or set out in an agreed judgement or order entered or sealed by a court in England and Wales or Northern Ireland or in a joint minute executed by the parties in Scotland (or equivalent documents elsewhere). This reflects the fact that such a finding reduces the liability for NHS charges as provided in section 153. Subsection (2) provides for regulations to be made to deal with cases where a claim becomes a qualifying claim as defined in section 153(9), that is where a claim has been settled by a prescribed mediation process and the damages payable under the settlement are to be reduced to reflect the injured person’s contributory negligence. Subsection (3) provides for cases where a certificate relating to the same injury has been issued in relation to the same injured person by both the Secretary of State and the Scottish Ministers or where a joint certificate has been issued to reflect liability under both schemes. It provides that, where the amounts due under one of these certificates (or parts of a certificate) have been adjusted following review or appeal, then the other authority must review its certificate (or part of a certificate) if it is satisfied that consequential adjustments are necessary or expedient. In addition to these two cases, subsection (4) enables a review of a certificate to be carried out by the authority either on its own initiative or on application by the compensator. Subsection (4)(a) provides for regulations to be made relating to the timing of such reviews and the circumstances or cases in which they may take place.

334.Subsection (5) provides that, following review, the authority may verify that the existing certificate is correct, make appropriate variations and issue a new certificate or revoke the old certificate. Subsection (6) prevents the authority from issuing a fresh certificate for a higher amount than a previous one unless satisfied that the previous certificate was based on incorrect or insufficient information supplied by the person to whom the certificate was issued. Subsection (7) enables a single certificate to be issued following a review to cover liability under both the English/Welsh and Scottish schemes.

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