20th March 2020
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Mr A was stationary at a set of traffic lights when the third party failed to observe and collided into the rear of our client’s vehicle causing extensive damage to the car. After being recommended by a previous client Mr A contacted our personal injury solicitors where he discussed the circumstances in great detail with our friendly case opening team. Our client was very happy with our service and instructed us to act on his behalf in pursuit of a car accident claim.
Initially the third party insurers admitted liability but later withdrew this admission alleging our client deliberately slammed on his brakes well before the traffic lights. The insurance company did however make payment for the vehicle damage.
Once the claim had fallen off the portal it was transferred to our personal injury solicitors in our specialist litigation team where Mr Yaqub took over conduct of case.
– The third party representatives were alleging our client’s accident was fraudulent insinuating Mr A or the claims company staged the accident to defraud money from the insurance company.
– Mr Yaqub contacted the third party insurers to discuss why they have withdrew the admission of liability, the third party insurers state they had taken a statement off their driver which gave them reason to suspect the accident was fraudulent, Mr Yaqub asked what these concerns were and the defendants failed to disclose any information. However, they asked us to disclose information and documents despite their refusal to share information. Accordingly we told them we would not disclose any documents or information unless they were willing to do so. Despite our warning the Defendant’s representatives failed to cooperate.
– We recommended to our client that proceedings were issued which our client agreed with. After issuing court proceedings the third party solicitors contacted us requesting an extension for their defence which Mr Yaqub did not agree to. We advised if they had co-operated with us earlier and disclosed the issues we would have done so and pointed out that we are well within our rights not to grant an extension as the civil procedure rules encourage a ‘cards on the table approach’ to which the defendants representatives admitted they were aware of.
– We were then told that their driver had left the company she worked for and they would be willing to disclose the statement in which the driver alleges our client slammed on the brakes prior to approaching the traffic lights. After consideration Mr Yaqub agreed to grant an extension on the condition that they confirm when their client alleged our client slammed on as it was indicated during the telephone conversation it was late last year but their client’s insurer advised they were investigating liability as far back in June 2011.
– They were also not raising fraud at this stage which meant we could not advice Mr A what he needed to prove. Mr Yaqub asked for a clear response in relation to whether fraud was being alleged. We did not receive a clear response.
– After contacting counsel we sought advice in regards to the issues we had identified. Counsel recommended we were request judgement as the defendants were not expressly stating fraud although they alleged our client slammed on and also they not make an application to withdraw admission of liability.
– The court ordered the Defendant to make an Application to withdraw their admission of liability. However, the Defendant did not do so and therefore we requested judgement which the Court granted. This meant our client had won his case and the only outstanding issue was how much compensation the Claimant should receive. We invited the Defendant’s representatives to make offers to settle our client’s claim but the Defendant’s just ignored our request. This meant that the case continued for a period of 8 months when it was not necessary.
One week before the trial the Defendant’s representatives contacted us and We had a without prejudice chat with the third party solicitor a week before the trial. He initially refused to budge but we pointed out where his client failed to deal with the claim. He stated without prejudice he would be willing to recommend to the client they settle the claim for £28,000.00. Our client was happy to accept this offer.
This should have been a straightforward case as the third party admitted liability, matters were made complicated when they advised us they had concerns and withdrew admission. The fact that the case was settled a week before trial suggests the third party realised they were in a weaker position than we were and settled to avoid further costs if the matter had gone to trial. There were major inconsistencies in what they were alleging and this was evident in the fact they decided to settle a week before trial.
It is unfortunate that our client was put through this ordeal and having the worry of having the stigma of being accused of fraud. We ensure we keep our clients informed at all stages and make them feel confident that we are on their side and are trying to resolve the matter. Many solicitors would have failed to pick out these flaws which could have meant our client would have lost his case. Mr A was overjoyed to have his name cleared and was very happy with the amount of compensation he was rewarded.
If you have been involved in a car accident that was not your fault and matters are made complex when the third party are insinuating fraud then contact our experienced personal injury solicitors today to discuss the matter with our dedicated case opening team on 08000 430 430 or have a live chat with us online on www.clearwatersolicitors.co.uk.