Accident Claims step by step process..
Do you have a personal injury claim that Accident Claims can help with?
First things first you need to establish whether you actually have a claim to make. Generally speaking if you have been injured in the last three years and it wasn’t your fault there’s a pretty good chance you have the right to make a claim.
Not entirely sure whether you fit the criteria? At any time you can contact us on 0800 012 4527 and we’ll tell you straight – there’s no obligation to go through us!
Get as much detail as you can before contacting any personal injury solicitor. E.g. if you have been injured as a result of a hole in the pavement then take some pictures and make a note of precisely where it was – all these details will be needed by your solicitor to help give you the best possible advice. If you were involved in a car accident and the police were involved then get a police reference number for the incident or ideally seek some medical attention and keep a record of this.
When you’ve decided you want to make a claim contact Accident Claims soon as you can to avoid any problems with time limitations. Generally speaking yon have three years so assuming you don’t hang around for too long you should be ok.
Once you have given all the information to your solicitor they will then liaise with the defendant’s insurers and make them aware that a claim is being issued against them. Your opponent may defend the claim, but in most cases where liability isn’t disputed it will merely be a negotiation task to ensure you are secured the maximum compensation for the injury. If you have any loss of income as a result then it’s important to make your solicitor aware of this as this will also become a key part of the claim.
Once you accept the settlement then it is normally full and final and will forfeit your rights to go up against that party for any further damages for the same incident at a later date. With this in mind make sure that what you are accepting is the right amount – this is why we would always recommend using a well-established and experienced accident claim solicitor.
Accident Claims have been established for over 40 years and have one of the best personal injury teams in the country. As we’ve mentioned earlier, even if you decide that you don’t want to use us we will happily just give you a second opinion. Our main priority is to ensure that the advice and the compensation you receive is accurate.
Accident claims at school have hit the news again after a Freedom of Information Act request showed more than £3million has been paid out over the last five years from just three cities.
Manchester, Birmingham and Greater London have paid out a combined total of £3.3million in compensation claims for injuries that have taken place within the school grounds.
£10k+ has been paid out for more serious claims that include broken bones and severed fingers.
As these claims only relate to a handful of UK cities it’s estimated that the bill across Britain is likely to include millions more.
Birmingham was the safest of the three cities with just under 200k being paid out to claimants. London and Manchester both paid out just over £1.5million. Surprisingly Manchester and London both had a similar number of pay-outs despite a greater number of schools in the London area.
Accident Claims guru Josh Donn questioned how health and safety was being managed at schools across the cities “It’s clear that the safety of children in schools is not being managed effectively. Funding needs to be given to schools to improve the overall safety as the taxpayer is ultimately paying the price shelling out on compensation claims. The majority of compensation claims we see involving schools could have been easily avoided if the children were monitored more effectively. Inevitably children are always going to have accidents but it’s imperative that local councils take responsibility for the safety measures put in place in schools across their boroughs. In the recent Freedom of Information Request once child received over £6,000 after they were burnt on chemicals during a class – a clear example of an injury that could have been prevented with giving the staff better training.”
One child received £13,500 after a tile fell off the school roof hitting them on the head. Critics argue that if the general maintenance in a school was improved it could cut down accident claims by at least 30%.
Has your child been subject to an accident at school that was due to the failings of a staff member? Accident Claims have a specialist team that can give you reliable claims advice if your child has been injured at school.
The Government have announced that from sometime next year in an effort to reduce the number of accident claims they intend making the payment of a referral fee illegal. They point to the fact that claims have increased due to the efforts of the many claims management companies which they says encourages victims to claim. Whether that will work is questionable.
In relation to a genuine victim why should he not use a claims management company who appoint a top firm of personal injury lawyers to represent him. Insurance Companies themselves derive much of their income from passing on details of accident claims to Lawyers in return for huge fees. Admiral Insurance have stated that 6% ofits profits is derived from referral fees.
Therefore it is likely that insurance Companies and Lawyer’s will find some ways of circumventing these new laws as and when they come into force. Many Lawyers and Accident Companies are talking together and forming joint ventures as a marketing exercise which would also be legal. What is wrong with a victim being “encouraged “ to claim if his claim is valid. The
answer is “ Nothing”
We feel that sense should prevail and the only person who should be penalised is the fraudulent claimant who clouds the water for all the genuine accident claims victims.
The real problem will in the interpretation of exactly “ What is a referral fee?
Another ‘crash for cash’ accident claims scam has been foiled with the culprit being sentenced to 10 months imprisonment.
Mr Khalid was found guilty after he had intentionally swerved in front of a teenage driver before slamming his brakes on to cause the crash. Mr Khalid later made an insurance claim putting all liability of the vulnerable driver who he had targeted. To make matters worse the defendant persuaded a family friend to take part in the criminal activity so he could later pass the blame on to them. Essex based Khalid now serves a prison sentence for conspiring to defraud.
The judge sentencing Khalid labelled his behaviour as ‘despicable’. Major crackdowns on ‘crash for cash’ accident claims have been taken place across 2013 in an attempt to eradicate insurance fraud from a rapidly growing market. Insurance fraud is nothing new as Bolton based firm Keoghs have been actively foiling insurance scams for longer than a decade.
Accident Claims fraud investigator Holly Paley says: “We regularly see claims that raise suspicion as things just don’t add up. We report any suspected incidents to the Insurance Fraud Bureau who have the systems to investigate in more detail. One of the biggest concerns is that some personal injury solicitors are accepting these cases in an attempt to stay afloat in difficult times. The whole industry needs to rally together to stamp out fraud and that means questioning claimants in detail to ensure we are acting responsibly”.
The majority of scams seem to be operated by intimidating gangs who target vulnerable drivers. Most drivers will not want to confront the individuals involved and critics argue that more needs to be done to avoid fraudulent accident claims slipping through the net. It was only recently that an individual successfully claimed their tenth pay-out over a couple of years. When there is little evidence available the laws of the road can favour the culprits.
Some drivers are now having CCTV cameras installed on their dashboards to avoid spurious claims being made against them. To be on the safe side why not try MI-Witness.
Have you been the victim of a ‘crash for cash’ scam?
Yesterday the Daily Express reported on how it’s the lawyers who benefit from the NHS compensation fund and how too much has been put aside for litigation. Accident Claims explains further;
Today a 10 year old girl has won over £4m in compensation after suffering serious head injuries during her birth at Norfolk and Norwich NHS hospital.
The NHS denied any responsibility for her injuries but eventually agreed to pay over 70pc of the damages. If the NHS would have agreed to pay compensation at the offset how much would this have saved the litigation fund?
Prior to her birth Emily Dye was starved of oxygen leading to the development of cerebral palsy
Included in Emily’s settlement is a payment of £112,000 to her parents for the devoted care they have given over the last decade.
Emily needs full time care for the rest of her life and will permanently have learning difficulties.
Fraudulent accident claims are prevalent in the UK. The charity Crimestoppers has put together a league table of the country’s worst offending postcodes for “crash for cash” scams. Quite remarkably a Bradford or Birmingham postcode came out in 9 of the 10 hotspots available.
Worst Offending Postcodes SOURCE: Crimestoppers
- BD9 – Bradford
- B10 – Birmingham
- BD3 – Bradford
- B11 – Birmingham
- BD9 – Bradford
- B8 – Birmingham
- B9 – Birmingham
- B25 – Birmingham
- B7 – Birmingham
- BL3 – Bolton
The charities new publications are part of a nationwide campaign to raise awareness about the impact of frivolous accident claims and essentially to put a stop to the large-scale ‘crash for cash’ scams happening on a daily basis.
Drivers in Bradford and Birmingham are being urged to be extra vigilant and report any suspicious activity. Crimestoppers has a hotline available for anyone to get in contact if they have information involving activity relating to insurance fraud. Insurance companies have been working hard with the charity providing information on key areas that need to be monitored more closely.
Typically a ‘crash for cash’ scam involves criminals setting up a crash that will lead to exaggerated accident claims and car hire bills. Insurance scams are being run by organised criminal gangs in what is becoming an increasingly lucrative market.
Accident Claims director Josh Donn commented; “It’s always going to be a difficult battle to put an end to exaggerated personal injury claims. The disappointing thing is that scams are now being run by sophisticated organised gangs and members of the public can feel intimidated standing up to them. We recently spoke to a gentleman who was the victim of a ‘flash for cash’ accident but didn’t proceed with a compensation claim out of fear. These gangs are targeting vulnerable people which make the process of stopping them even more difficult. All the staff at Accident Claims are committed to preventing insurance fraud and we report any suspicious incidents or claims to the Insurance Fraud Bureau (IFB).
As is the case with personal injury it is very difficult to prove that someone is in fact scamming the system. Whiplash claims are difficult to disprove and compensation can be achieved for even the slightest of bumps. Fraud detection systems have come a long way over the last decade. Defendant firms like Keoghs have made significant investments into their own fraud detection system many years ago which sees them successfully find and put a stop to a number of fraudulent accident claims.