Compensation Recovery Unit: What Is It?

Reading time: 2 mins

Carrie Tennick, May 28, 2021

As part of your personal injury claim, you might hear the Compensation Recovery Unit mentioned.

The Compensation Recovery Unit is part of the government’s Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). It works with insurance providers, injury solicitors and citizens dealing with the DWP.

It recovers benefits paid to injury claimants when compensation has been paid. Its job is to stop people being compensated twice for the same injury or illness. It also recovers the cost of NHS treatment you might have received. The party responsible for your injury or their insurer will pay.

The Unit isn’t something you’ll deal with personally – your solicitor will handle it all for you.

Compensation Recovery Unit duties

All injury or illness claims have to be registered with the Compensation Recovery Unit. It’s down to the responsible party or their insurer to register the claim, so it’s nothing for you to worry about.

The Unit is there to pay back the public purse when you receive state benefits as well as compensation if your claim is successful. This is down to the idea that the party responsible should pay your compensation – not the state.

It will instruct the party responsible for paying your compensation to pay the DWP back the cost of any government benefits you received as a result of your accident. This could include Universal Credit or Personal Independence Payment, for example.

The Compensation Recovery Unit also recovers payment for any NHS treatment you received from the party responsible for your accident.

How it affects you

To ensure you are not paid twice for the same claim, your compensation might be reduced according to the benefits you’ve received. If you haven’t received any benefits related to your accident, this isn’t something you have to worry about.

For example, if you haven’t been able to work because of your injury, you might have claimed Universal Credit. To avoid you receiving that benefit amount twice, your compensation could be reduced by that figure. Instead of you receiving it, the party responsible for your accident will pay it to the DWP.

That way, you receive your benefits while the DWP is not out of pocket for an accident caused by someone else’s negligence.

In the end, the Compensation Recovery Unit’s job doesn’t have a huge impact on you or your claim.

Checking and challenging

The Compensation Recovery Unit sends a certificate detailing the benefits it can recover to your solicitor and to the other side. It states how much you’ve claimed in benefits, what type of benefits they were and the amount the responsible party paid to the DWP.

Your solicitor will check these figures with you to make sure they’re correct. If you think they’re wrong or a mistake has been made, you can challenge them. This is done through a process called mandatory reconsideration.

You’ll have to do this within one month of the other side repaying your benefit amount to the DWP. This makes it hugely important to get back to your solicitor as quickly as possible when they need something from you.

If you have any questions about the Compensation Recovery Unit and what it does, just get in touch. Give us a call or start your claim online and we’ll talk you through the process.

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