We understand making an accident claim can be confusing. That’s why our team of personal injury soliciors have compiled a list of commonly asked questions (and the answers too luckily)!
If you suffered a personal injury, your claim must be settled or issued at court
within 3 years from the date of your accident. If you have not suffered a personal
injury but have sustained other losses, then your claim must be issued at Court
within 6 years from the date of your accident.
If a child has suffered an injury, their claim must be issued at Court within 3 years of their 18th birthday. If these periods are missed it will mean that you will lose your right to claim damages and you will receive no compensation from the other side for your injuries and losses.
At this stage it is impossible to give a realistic estimate of how long it will take to settle your claim. A straightforward claim can be settled within 6-8 months, but others may take a lot longer. A claim can take longer to settle if liability is disputed or if you have suffered complicated injuries. If your claim has to go to court it will probably be listed for a final hearing within 9 months of us issuing the procedures.
It is impossible to say how much you will get until the medical report and all aspects of the claim have been looked at. When any offer of settlement is made we will let you know the amount and give you advice as to whether this amount is too low or just right. Whilst there are no fixed amounts for injuries, there are past reported cases and judicial guidelines which we consult to give us a good idea of what you should receive.
It usually takes up to 6 weeks for the other side to pay your damages from the date you accept their offer. This is not a definite period, merely a guideline. It may be possible for interim payments to be made sooner, e.g. for repair costs, write off values, medical treatment.
You can help things move quicker by returning any paperwork and providing any information we request in full. A common problem is that we have to wait for clients’ National Insurance details. Please let us have this information at the outset.
The most common reasons why a claim is issued into Court is that the other side
is reluctant to admit fault or they admit fault, but fail to make a reasonable offer
to compensate you. The Court proceedings involve the issue of official court documents
which then have to be served on the other driver or parties.
Once a case is issued all parties must stick to a strict timetable laid down by the Court. We will fully explain these procedures to you when we issue proceedings and as your case progresses.
It is our policy to issue Court proceedings at the earliest opportunity if it is clear that the third party is disputing the claim. We have found that simply issuing a case can prompt a settlement by the other side. Over 95% of claims never go to a Court hearing. It is very common for issued cases to be “settled” at some point prior to the hearing date.
If the third party is not insured, we will let you know immediately. In most cases
it is possible to redirect your claim to the MIB (Motor Insurers’ Bureau). The MIB
is an organisation set up to help the victims of untraced, uninsured and foreign
The MIB do charge an excess of £300 which is deducted from your special damages i.e. compensation you get which is not for personal injury or arising from the personal injury. The MIB pay ‘nominal’ costs to us if the third party is “untraced”. In these cases we would charge you a reduced fixed fee for our services and would propose to deduct this amount from any damages that you recover. We would then write to you as soon as we knew the third party was untraceable.
It is our job to recover your uninsured losses from the party who caused your accident. These are the losses that your own motor insurance policy does not cover. We will attempt to recover these losses quickly, whilst causing you as little disruption and inconvenience as possible. However, we do need your help to let us have as much necessary information as possible.
You can, yes. However, if you have a fully comprehensive insurance policy but decide to ask the third party’s insurers to pay for the repairs/total loss value of your vehicle, you must be aware that this is very likely to take longer than if you used your own fully comprehensive insurance policy.
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