Being involved in a road traffic accident can be traumatic or even life-changing whether the crash was small or major. Dealing with your physical recovery. Coping with your financial losses as a result of those injuries. We understand it can be a stressful time.
But when it turns out your injuries and financial losses were caused by a vehicle that doesn’t stop or is uninsured, we also understand that your first reaction might to be worry.
‘How can I prove the accident wasn’t my fault?’ … ‘How can I claim compensation if I don’t know the identity of the other driver?’
These are perfectly normal questions but as complicated as they may seem these questions do have answers.
For decades, Digby Brown has dealt with more road traffic crashes than any other form of accident – and this means we also have decades of experience in road accident personal injury claims involving an uninsured driver or a driver who cannot be identified/traced.
The law in the UK is very clear – if you’ve been physically injured or suffered financial loss because someone else was negligent then you are entitled to compensation. No one should ever be out of pocket because of an accident that wasn’t their fault and an accident with an uninsured or untraced driver is no different.
And just to be clear - this is not a special rule for only drivers. All road users such as pedestrians and cyclists can recover compensation in the event that they are involved in an accident that was caused by an uninsured or untraced driver.
No win no fee personal injury solicitors
The expression “No Win – No Fee” is often used in personal injury cases. It is used as a way of funding a compensation claim where the accident victim does not have the means to pay for the costs involved as the case progresses.
A number of solicitors are prepared to handle personal injury cases on a “No Win – No Fee” basis but very few are able to offer their clients complete protection if the case is unsuccessful.
In that event, the client could end up being liable for many thousands of pounds in legal expenses or the case won't be fully investigated and therefore likely to under-settle.
Compensate 'no win no fee' funding
Digby Brown has its own funding company, Compensate, which provides the funding to allow the case to be fully investigated, employ the best experts surrounding the circumstances of the accident and/or injuries sustained and where and if necessary go to court.
If for whatever reason the case is unsuccessful, Compensate pays all your legal expenses and those of your opponent – you pay nothing.
On average our clients receive over 3 times the pre-litigation offer
Because of Compensate funding Digby Brown's success rate is extremely high and on average our clients receive three times the pre-litigation offer.
In the event the case is successful, a small percentage of your damages will be deducted with VAT to pay for this service. The percentage which Compensate will charge depends on the degree of risk involved. We believe that this is the fairest method of giving clients access to justice whilst ensuring their cases are fully investigated, prepared and funded.
Beware of compensation offers which may be too good
We know you will have seen many adverts offering 100% compensation or telling you that you will not lose any of your compensation, however we believe there are a number of problems with companies that do this.
- How do they make their money if they don’t charge you anything?
- If they aren’t taking any money from you, the client, what incentive do they have to ensure you receive the right level of compensation, appropriate to the injuries you have sustained?
- Fully preparing a case, finding out exactly what happened and what the consequences of your injuries may mean in the long term, is expensive, how do they do this properly?
- If they aren’t fully preparing these cases will they just accept the first offer they are given on your behalf by the Insurance company?
- It makes simple business sense, the less work they do the higher their profit margin is - they simply have no incentive to work harder on your behalf.
- These adverts in the main are from English firms on national television which operates in a different way and therefore wouldn’t apply to a Scottish person.
We know from the many client cases we mandate from other firms of solicitors (in the main at the request of the client who is extremely unsatisfied with the service received for the other firm) that many shortcuts are taken in preparation and that the first offer received is being recommended for acceptance, regardless of the value.
Getting something for nothing is usually the first sign of poor service.
Correct level of compensation with Digby Brown
Our experience and statistics show time and time again we will achieve the correct level of compensation which will be substantially more than the insurer is initially prepared to offer.
Even after we have deducted our percentage as a success fee you will gain considerably more than you would have achieved using a 100% compensation model.
Contact Digby Brown's personal injury solicitors
For further information about no win no fee, or anything else, call us on 0333 200 5925 or fill in our enquiry form below and someone will get back in touch with you.
You may have questions, fears and doubts but with Digby Brown working in the background for you, you’re free to focus on your recovery.
Your solicitor will fully investigate the circumstances of the accident and work with experts to assess the seriousness of your injuries and how it affected your life. This can then be used to work out a value of compensation that is fair to you, your needs, your family and your future.
Your road traffic accident solicitor will take the time to walk you through the whole process of your uninsured or untraced driver personal injury claim.
From the first phone call you will have everything explained to you in plain English. Whether it’s about our no win, no fee funding model “Compensate” or discussing the settlement process.
But as with any traffic injury compensation claim, the key to securing you fair compensation is in carrying out full and thorough investigations into every aspect of what happened to you:
Your injury – gathering medical evidence to work out how badly you were injured and what the long-term effects will be (and how it will impact your daily life in the future)
The cost of medical treatment - Some injuries may require specialist or private medical treatment. We can help you access this to aid your recovery with any costs recovered as part of your claim.
The cost of ongoing rehabilitation - Some people may require ongoing support like physiotherapy or counselling – this is also something we can help you source.
Loss of earnings – The purpose of compensation is to put you back in a financial position as if an accident never happened. Therefore recovering lost earnings will likely be the biggest part of your case. Whether you lost wages for one day or for the rest of your life, your solicitor will work with top experts to calculate your losses. If your immediate financial situation is serious then we will also take steps to recover a lump sum known as an “interim payment”. This will help you cover urgent domestic costs like rent or mortgage bills.
Other expenses - There are also small expenses that people are able to include as part of their claim such as having to pay for a taxi home after a crash or if personal possessions were damaged. It is important to keep any receipts for this purpose as they may become useful at the time you make a claim.
If you are involved in accident with an uninsured or untraced driver you may still be able to claim compensation. This can be done by submitting a claim to the Motor Insurers’ Bureau (MIB).
The MIB is a national scheme where car insurance companies essentially pay a certain amount of money into a big pot every year. This money is then used to provide compensation to victims of traffic collisions where the driver who caused the crash either had no insurance or couldn’t be traced. The MIB can even be used to deal with issues with fuel spills on the road.
But remember – although it is there to deal with this type of claim, the MIB will not automatically respond to an application for compensation with a payment. An applicant will face the same type of challenges as if an insurer were involved. The process can be slow, will involve investigations, and the value of the claim may be subject to negotiation. Thankfully, our expert independent solicitors are experienced in dealing with claims against the MIB.
Our client James Morton learned this. He suffered a broken foot and couldn’t work for three months after his car crashed when it spun on the road due to a diesel spill. The MIB tried to settle his claim for £13,000 but after Digby Brown got involved it settled for £169,000.
Your first thought might be to simply ask for compensation from your own insurer but there are a few key issues to consider here:
Your policy type – in the event of a crash with an uninsured driver many insurers will only pay out if you have a fully comprehensive cover. This means that anyone with anything less than ‘fully comp’ cover may find themselves stuck.
Cars v people – your car insurance is for your car, it does not cover you. This means insurers might only pay you compensation for damage to your vehicle rather than any injuries you suffered.
Special rules – some insurers claim they will pay compensation provided you can give them with certain information. For example, one major insurer claims they will help you provided you are ‘fully comp’ and know the registration of the vehicle that hit you; the make, model and colour of the vehicle that hit you and the full name and address of the driver who hit you. If the other driver doesn’t have insurance then what are the chances they’ll give you their name and address? And if the other driver can’t be found how can you provide your insurer with any vehicle details?
You need an expert – if you are injured after being hit by an uninsured or untraced driver you will want to know your personal injury traffic claim is being investigated by a personal injury expert. Sadly, we’ve seen too many insurers attempt to under-settle claims so securing the help of a personal injury solicitor is the best way of ensuring you secure fair compensation.
The route to getting that compensation you are entitled to can be a difficult one, with procedural hurdles to clear. Therefore, getting the right person for the job matters to ensure you receive the compensation you are entitled to.
If you would like to speak to a legal advisor, please call us or fill in our online enquiry form and we will be back in touch.
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