Day One Month Eleven
On the 1 November 2010 we had a claimant action in the Manchester County Court. We were referred by a fellow legal firm to act for a passenger claimant (Mr. B.). They were acting for the driver and there was a conflict of interest. We took over the action and issued proceedings in the Bolton County Court. The driver had his own claim in the Manchester County Court. The matter was ultimately transferred to Manchester County Court where it was listed for a trial of 2 day on the 1st and 2nd of November 2010. Whilst Mr. B’s claim was for personal injury only, the real issue was the allegations made by the defendant insurers that this was a staged accident and was therefore fraudulent.
Our client Mr.B. received:
There were 4 defendants, each of the drivers of the cars and their respective insurance companies. Both of the road traffic acting insurers were not indemnifying their driver’s, but were defending the claims on the grounds that our client’s had been involved in either colluding or conspiring to stage this accident.
Rather strangely, instead of basing their claim on evidence, the insurer’s continued to stand with this position and even made an application 2 days before the trial to introduce additional documents, which were only disclosed to us 4 days before trial. This application was initially opposed, but was agreed and those documents were to be put before the trial Judge.
On the morning of the trial, contrary to their firm stand until that point, the defendants opened up negotiation and settled our client’s claim after 3 hours of haggling in the morning of the 1st November 2010 in the sum of £1,750.00 for our client, plus his legal costs. Had this matter gone to trial as we had expected, he would have received 100% of mark-up (success fee) on his costs.
As it was settled before the trial commenced he received a mark-up of 12.5% and counsels at 45%.
This case sets out the following:
1. Claims made via claim farmers raise negative assumption of your claim.
2. Our determination to pursue the best interest of our client from taking over this file from another firm of solicitors.
3. That we have well-established fee sharing agreements where we take over cases from other law firms and bring those claims to a successful conclusion.
4. We will stand by our clients once we risk assess the merits of the claim in a positive way and will pursue to the end of the earth. (We had 2 conferences with Counsels, meeting with our clients to deal with the allegations of fraud including meeting him 2 weeks before the trial so that he is fully aware of his involvement and responsibility as a claimant).
Whilst the insurers will blow hot and cold because the amount of damages were only £1,750.00 but they will end up picking up legal costs in excess of £35,000.00, (had they continued up to the end of the trial they were looking at a figure for costs in access of £65,000.00). It is entirely their fault for not taking realistic view much earlier on.
Sadly, like many other genuine claims, the insurers continue to deal with these claims based on assumptions and not on evidence before the lawyers.
If you require any information with regards services that we offer as law firm in relation to any kind of civil dispute or personal injury claim please do not hesitate to contact Leeanne Druse or Abdul Hafezi at our office on 0207 377 0877. Free phone number: 0800 389 9136