The cost of legal claims against the NHS in the UK could rise to £15bn in the next ten to 15 years, according to the NHS Litigation Authority.

The cost of claims already made and expected to be made were £11.9bn two years ago.

The NHS Litigation Authority Annual Report and Accounts for 2010 has attributed increasing costs to high value claims.

An increase in legal costs has also contributed to the rise, the report adds.

Medical Protection Society (MPS) chief executive Tony Mason said in the last 12 months MPS has settled its four highest value claims, the highest costing more than £8m.

“For cases in the last five years in England and Wales where we have paid compensation of up to £100,000, claimant legal fees were more than 90% of the damages paid out,” Mason said.

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By GlobalData

The MPS is a not-for-profit organisation that offers legal and ethical help to medical and dental professionals.