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Dodgy Personal Injury Claim


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Basically I went into the back of a Fiat panda (in a Skoda fabia). Both vehicles are of similar weight and I was doing more than 5mph but certainly less than 10 mph as I was in first gear and I know the car well.

 

The Skoda has had very little damage (only a small pierce to the bumper less than an inch in size) that we didn't even bother to repair to this day! The Panda has minimal damage and driver said she would look at getting a private quote (to save on my insurance).

 

Anyway she told me after that a garage quoted £1000 just for labour :confused: and she is going through the insurance... I then get a letter claiming Personal Injury :eek:

 

Apart from the fact that this will obviously effect my accident history, I am 100% sure that the claim is fraudulent as the impact was so minimal and only the bumper (no solid part of my vehicle) hit her car.

 

The thing is it looks like Norwich Union will just pay out and my premiums will go up. I have already asked the insurance brokers to write to them to ask them to fight it but what can you do, it seems like people these days will do anything for a bit of easy cash :mad:

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Even if the accident was at a fairly slow speed an injury could have still been caused - most common injury will be damage to soft tissue, often referred to as whiplash. This can be caused by an impact at low speed, because the head is suddenly jerked back and forth beyond its normal limits.

 

As you struck the vehicle they would have been pushed forward and then, because their foot is on the brake their car is rapidly slowed down. As the vehicle accelerates forward, it pushes the body forward too, but the head remains behind momentarily, rocking up and back, until some of the muscles and ligaments are stretched or torn. Too often the injury occurs before the head rebounds off the headrest.

 

From a medical point of view, things have moved on somewhat - in the past a typical whiplash injury, where no bones were broken, was hard to document. Soft tissue injury didn't show up on normal x-rays/radiographs and insurance companies would deny coverage. Literally adding insult to injury, the patient suffering all too real pain was considered to be a fraud, a liar, or at best a hypochondriac. New imaging devices (CAT Scans, Magnetic Imaging, and Ultra Sound) now show soft tissue injury and therefore insurance companies now cover most whiplash injuries.

 

Most insurers, and I assume Norwich Union are the same, will insist on a full chiropractic check-up and some kind of evidence, as above, before settling any such claim, so if they do pay out the claim is probably genuine.

Opinions given herein are made informally by myself as a lay-person in good faith based on personal experience. For legal advice you must always consult a registered and insured lawyer.

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I'm glad that you are with Norwich Union - one of the things we are trying to clamp down on is bogus pi claims, what we will try an do with genuine cases is provide physio therapy etc first, as above evidance is needed etc, I think more of the larger co's do the same ( In know it's annoying - we all pay way too much for our insurance because of things like these)

 

I've can also assure you that I've seen cases where we have thrown out PI cases as clients wanted stupid settlements due to lack of evidance and declining our medical help ( Private Doctors assesments and as above sessions of physiotheraphy!!!!)

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Thanks for the reasssuring info..:)

 

All I know is I got a letter telling me they were going for PI, and then another telling me the woman was going to Harley Street to see a doctor and to reply within 14 days if I had any objection (and this letter was recieved 11 days after the date it was written). All very suspect I think as this was before all the strikes with Royal Mail!

 

Are there any particular contacts in Norwich Union who would be useful to contact (I dont trust our broker!)

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The claim would normally be handled by Norwich Union, not your broker - are they not contacting you directly?

 

I've asked a Norwich Union employee to look at this thread to see if they can add anything further.

Opinions given herein are made informally by myself as a lay-person in good faith based on personal experience. For legal advice you must always consult a registered and insured lawyer.

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Guest Aviva Support

Hi Peter123

I'd certainly be able to look at this for you, I'll need to talk to my colleagues when I'm back in the office tomorrow, I may also need some more detail, could you email me? My work address (can't check today) is [email protected] and my home address (where I'm contactable all day) is [email protected].

 

Hope this helps

Becca

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If a person is injured on the property of another, a court will impose liability on the property owner or possessor if (1) the property owner or possessor owed the injured person a duty of reasonable care and (2) the property owner or possessor acted negligently in maintaining or otherwise using the property. Whether the property owner or possessor owed the injured person a duty of care, as well as the extent of care owed, depends on the relationship between the person owning or holding the property and the injured person.

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