Compensation claims where liability is in dispute


For the majority of personal injury compensation claims, it is usually easy enough to see who is liable. In cases such as car accidents where one car crashes in to the rear of another stationary vehicle, it is easy to apportion blame and therefore workout who will be the liable party when it comes to making a claim for compensation. In such a circumstance, it is usually a simple process to get a claim for compensation placed with a solicitor.

However, in cases where it is not so cut and dried as to who was at fault for an accident leading to an injury – such as a slip or trip accident where it is not known who owns the land in question, whether the land is owned by more than one party or if the injured client was partly responsible for their own misfortune, it can be harder to know whether or not you would have a viable claim for compensation. One of the key elements of being entitled to compensation is having a liable person, party or organisation to make a claim against. But if liability is in dispute, can you still claim personal injury compensation?

Contributory negligence

In some cases, a claimant may find that they will have to accept a percentage of the responsibility for an accident. This is called contributory negligence. An example of contributory negligence would be a person who is injured after slipping on a wet floor whilst intoxicated. When asking if you have a valid slipping accident claim, your condition (drink and drugs etc) at the time is relevant. If you were drunk, the 3rd party responsible for the floor where you slipped may admit that it was dangerous and wet with no signs erected and therefore to an element of liability. However, if they are aware that you were drunk at the time (your medical records will show this – and you should always be honest!) the 3rd party are likely to state that they are of the view that the person would not have fallen if they were not drunk. In such a case, the claimant may have to accept that they are 25% or 50% responsible for the accident and as such, for every £1000 of their final settlement value, accept the relevant reduction (%) in accordance with their contribution to their own accident.

Liability denied

There are also cases where a 3rd party defence solicitor will refute any liability whatsoever. In these cases, your Direct2Compensation specialist personal injury solicitor will advise you as to whether or not they feel you have any realistic prospect of succeeding if your claim were to go all the way to court. If neither side can agree on liability – i.e, your solicitor feels that the 3rd party are liable and the 3rd party deny it, the only place for the claim to be decided is by a judge, in court.

Neither side would wish to go to court if they didn’t feel that they were likely to win. Going to court is unusual and unlikely in MOST personal injury claims, but you should always be aware that it is always a possibility with any claim. If your solicitor is of the view that the defence raised by the 3rd party is strong and that a court is likely to uphold the defence, your claim will be closed. Whilst this would be disappointing, you should bear in mind that you will not have to pay any costs for your claim as it will have been managed on a 100% No Win No Fee basis. You also have the option of finding another solicitor for a second opinion.

In all claims for personal injury compensation, any claimant must be able to demonstrate that there is a 3rd party for a claim to be made to and that the 3rd party is at least partly responsible for the incident that lead to the injuries forming the basis of the claim. Where an injured person is obviously 100% at fault for their injuries, there will be no basis to pursue a claim for personal injury compensation.

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  1. Hi, I was involved in a deliberate collision in Feb this yr, the other driver was breaking hard in front of me on 2 occasions for no reason, I made sure the road was clear ahead and attempted to over take, on doing so the driver of the other vehicle purposely rammed her car into the passenger side of my vehicle causing my tyre to blow out and stearing rack to break, my daughter was in the front passenger side, and hurt her ribs and whip lash and trauma, I also had whiplash , wrist sprain from trying to control my steering and back pain and sever distress. Her boyfriend was in the back and received similar injuries. She threatened us that if we tell anyone she would come after our family. I called the police immediately. There were no witnesses or cameras , and the police said it was an insurance matter. Since then my daughter has had her medical and physio. I’ve not had any of these but yet I’ve been offered 1500, by the other insurers as settlement. I am so angry that she is getting away with this that it keeps me awake at night as she could have killed my daughter who is pregnant and at the time too. And myself. They are denying liability and so do I strongly, where do I stand with this offer and do I have a right to refuse it as I’ve not even had a medical yet.

    • If you were being represented by a Solicitor, they would fight this for you and would seek to ensure that a medical assessment is undertaken to fully appraise your injuries and symptoms. Such action would be likely to see the value of any settlement increase accordingly.

      The issue you have in this matter though is the lack of witnesses to corroborate your version of events. With that in mind, it does make it easy for the defendant insurers to deny liability and claim it was either your fault or that you were both jointly liable. This could be reflected in the offer you have received.

  2. Problem with feet in work refused fatigue matting foot problem, became worse developed into fibroma growths.unable to wear safety footwear consequently lost job several members of management were asked for matting but refused on cost grounds do I have a case for neglect in the work place,I have now had to have surgery on my feet.

    • This is an unusual situation and you may have grounds for a claim. However, there could be issues regarding proving the causal link between your work, the lack of matting and the foot problem.

  3. Hi I am due in court as I had an accident a while ago the defendants who were not there on the day of the accident have accident have given statements both of which are saying I was incompetent,would this stand in court???? Also they have said that I was given 1000 hours of training which they supplied with a few dates on a piece of paper with no signatures to say when I was signed off I have never signed no training matrix,also both of the statements say that they never had any problems whilst they were working but I beg to differ with that and they say I was rushing on the day again they were not on site to determine if I was rushing

    • If you are of the view that the statements issued by the defendants are misleading and factually incorrect, you need to attend the court and provide responses to every incorrect element of their statements to the Judge sitting on the case. If you can provide factually correct responses in a manner that the Judge is minded to accept, you could well succeed with your claim. If you can provide evidence to substantiate your version of events you will succeed.

  4. Hello,

    Last year October I was invovled in a tram incident that sprained and caused muscle damage to my right shoulder, causing my self to be off of work for 10 days and the mental abuse I received from NETS trams started shortly after. I have started a claim but had it refused as the tram company said that the safety feature was activated by something so called being the tracks, however if there was something on the line the tram wouldn’t of pulled off just seconds after the emergency stop. But the claims company I decided to go with, said without any proof and just what the tram company said, they would stop my claim from going any further. What do you recommend I do?

    • If you have been through the claims process and the claim has failed on the basis that there is no evidence to support your view that the tram company were liable, it is very hard to offer any positive options going forward.

      To succeed with a claim for compensation, an injured person must be able to identify negligence and importantly, provide evidence to support such a view. In this case, it would seem that the tram emergency stop system worked to prevent an impact with an object that is unknown – whether that be a pedestrian, animal or other object. Such a system working in such a way would not be deemed to be an issue that would allow you to succeed with a claim. If you are alleging that the emergency stop system was faulty and caused an unnecessary violent jolt, you will need some evidence to support such a view.

  5. Hi after a 3rd party has denied ramming my car she has now admitted it but says i was responsible as opened door on to her car ive got a solicitor but dont seem very good its been going on since December 17 last spoke i was told 3rd party had until 4th of April to subit statement and its been sent to court i just rang them my solicitor aways busy but i was told still no defence statement is this right can they do this ? Be thankful for your reply

    • If the defendant insurer has missed a deadline, the standard procedure would be for your Solicitor to provide them with a defined extension – usually a further 21 working days or similar. If the defendant insurer then fails to meet the extended deadline, your Solicitor will issue court proceedings to force them to attend a hearing regarding the claim.

  6. Sainsbury’s sign at the side of the travellator says ‘PLEASE STEP OFF THE TRAVELLATOR CAREFULLY’ Well I was unable to do this because my trolley was stuck!
    On the 6th December 2018, I visited Sainsbury’s store in Selly Oak Birmingham, to purchase a few items and on leaving picked up a trolley, from the shop floor, which on reflection must have been abandoned for one reason or another. Then I proceeded to the travellator to get to the car park.

    On the way down, it was difficult to keep the trolley straight as the left wheel kept veering inward and I struggled to move the trolley to its correct position. I persevered and thought no more of it, until I got to the exit and tried to push the trolley off the travellator.
    This proved impossible and with the travellator still moving, the trolley reared up on me, throwing me onto my back and the trolley falling on top of me. My clothes got ripped and I feared my feet were also going to get trapped. Apparently, somebody manning the travellator pulled the emergency stop button. Two people waiting at the bottom (who have provided their names as witnesses) rushed to my help. I suffered with severe muscular pain and cuts and bruises to my back and wrist, knee and arm, as well as post-traumatic stress from the incident. Currently, I am still suffering with backache and crippling pain in my left wrist.

    Security also rushed to my aid and said they had it all on CCTV footage, which was kept for 28 days. At that moment in time, I was in such a state of shock that I couldn’t understand what had happened and all the Sainsbury’s first aider could say was we will pay you for the damage to your clothes, rather than any concern for my welfare. I sensed a feeling this had happened before and she was well versed in what to say.

    However, I took the matter to a solicitor (Irwin Mitchell) on a no-win, no-fee basis, because I was concerned about them disposing of the footage. The solicitor told me not to accept any reimbursement for clothes. However, the defendants denied liability on the basis that following the accident no defects were found on the travellator or trolley. However, they haven’t given a reason for the accident especially as inspection records show that there were problems with the travellator.

    However, I wish to challenge their denial on the grounds that the trolley or travellator was defective otherwise, why did the trolley become lodged on the travellator? The CCTV footage plainly shows the trolley appears to be lodged to one side horizontally on the black rubber bands of the travellator.
    Also it seems that Sainsbury’s are relying on just one persons evidence i.e. that of their first aider, for the inspection and testing of the equipment after the accident. It’s well known that a trolley can probably straighten up after being pushed a couple of times, but this is a difficult task to do on a travellator.

    Surely in such an incident as this the travellator should have been properly inspected and not left to just one employee?
    Also can this witness be relied upon, in view of the fact that she wrongly recorded the accident as having no witnesses, when in fact there were two who gave her their names and telephone number?

    When the solicitor closed the case because of the denial, it was left to me to contact the witnesses who sent a statement about the incident.
    Also it seems strange that although there is no work order record for the time of the incident, there are various dates around that time when the travellator needed attention, such as on the 17/12 when the trousers of a man got caught in the same travellator.

    Finally, if the matter went to court, I feel a judge would be inclined to believe somebody who has CCTV footage and witnesses as opposed to somebody who is not a technical expert on such equipment.

    To conclude I feel this evidence, together with the witness statement can help to encourage Sainsbury’s to change their position.
    I have all the above evidence.

    • Clearly, in the eyes of your previous Solicitor – who has seen the full defence raised by the defendant – has considered the defence to be strong and on the balance of probability, likely to stand up to scrutiny should the claim be pursued further. As you had instructed the previous Solicitor to act for you on a No Win No Fee basis, the Solicitor has to carefully consider the balance between acting in your best interests and not exposing themselves to the risk of extensive costs should they pursue a claim that is likely to fail. As your Solicitor has chosen to close the claim, they have taken the view that to pursue the claim further would likely do nothing other than cause them to incur further costs, so in their view, closing the claim was a prudent move. It should be remembered that this action by your previous Solicitor would mean that they also did not receive any costs for the work that they had undertaken.

      Whilst it may be possible that a different Solicitor would take a different view and seek to pursue the claim further, the closure of the claim by a previous Solicitor will give a new Solicitor doubts as to whether the claim should be taken on.

      If Sainsbury’s have produced evidence to show that on inspection, no faults were found with the travelator or trolley, they are in a strong position in terms of defending any claim as whilst they are not denying that you had an accident and were injured, they are denying that they have any responsibility and that this was an unfortunate accident and not due to their negligence. Whilst you are supported by CCTV footage and two witnesses, the footage and witnesses can only confirm that an accident happened and that your trolley appeared to jam and caused you to be pushed over and injured. Again, this does not demonstrate certainty that the defendant was negligent. Sainsbury’s could argue that the trolley was jammed by the way you had positioned it and that they didn’t cause the accident. I don’t say this as my point of view, but simply to outline the problems you face with this matter. Without certain compelling evidence, a Judge will not find a defendant liable as the onus is on the claimant to prove negligence and at this time, it would appear that this proof is not available.

      You mention that the travelator had been tended to after incidents and also probably routine maintenance. The incident you point to on the 17th December again would not prove any negligence.

      My initial view is that our Solicitors would probably reach the same conclusion as your previous Solicitors given the strict risk assessments needed to be able to pursue a claim on a No Win No Fee basis. However, I have forwarded your comment – and my response to a specialist Solicitor and asked them for their view. We will feed this back to you directly on receipt of their response.

  7. I tripped in the street on a damaged pavement and fractured my wrist. The council admitted it was their fault 3 years ago, but I have since had problems with my wrist and been diagnosed with crps. I was under the impression that the claim was coming to an end this year with all the evidence from consultants occupational therapists etc, but today my Solicitor rang saying the defendants are now not accepting liability and she needs to talk with me. Can this happen after 3 years?

    • An admission of liability can be withdrawn, but the defendant will have to be basing that on new evidence to support their view. Your Solicitor will speak to you, but it could be that the matter now has to go to court for a Judge to decide the outcome.

  8. Our dog escaped and bite another dog, the dogs owner tripped over the lead during the incident but didn’t show signs of any injury.
    The vets bill was settled by use and it was put in writing and signed by both parties that no more money would be sought for vet bills as treatment had ended, in addition the other party signed to say they wouldn’t seek any future personal compensation.
    How binding is this and would it actually stop them making a future claim?

    • Essentially, if you have a written agreement that confirms that your payment of the vetinary costs was full and final settelement of this matter, then that should be the end of the matter.

      However, if there was nothing noted regarding the injuries of the Dog owner, there is a possibility that they could return to claim further.

  9. I tripped on a tree root growing though the footpath. I was heavily pregnant and ended up in a and e. This happened 12 04 2016. I have pictures of the injurys. I have pictures of the the footpath and there are hospital records. This was reported to the council at the time. The footpath is still the same now. I have got married since so my name has changed.

    • You could well have a valid claim for compensation. However, the accident date you have provided indicates that your claim limitation period will expire in less than 1 month (unless you are under 21 years of age). As such, this makes it extremely difficult to proceed with a claim at this stage due to the lack of sufficient time to get the claim sorted before the limitation period expires.

  10. I fell at work on a wet floor and shattered my hip needing an emergency hip replacement.
    The blame is with the “stand in” cleaner who was not following the correct procedures and had not put out any wet floor signs. I work in a large supermarket.

    Work is denying any liability in my fall. Their defence is that i had clocked out 20 mins earlier (however i had asked and gotten permission from my manager to stay after this to complete my work) They also say that I fell from a standing position and so that is not their fault?! There are no witnesses to the actual fall, only after when I was laying on the floor in agony.

    Where do I stand and could I win a case against them? The whole experience has seriously impeded my quality of life, I can no longer do a lot of the things I enjoyed without severe anxiety and discomfort. Im no longer the same person. I returned to work after 6 months however it is a struggle to stay on my feet.

    • Your description of the accident would indicate that liability should attach to the employer as the cleaner had failed to erect hazard warning signs. The fact that you had clocked out some 20 minutes earlier is irrelevant and should be ignored.

      If you have not yet instructed a specialist Solicitor to act for you in this matter, I would suggest that you contact us to get your claim started. We work with specialist slipping accident Solicitors would would be very happy to pursue your claim against your employer.

  11. A woman came into the pub I run and was found on the floor by the bar person, she did not ask to report an accident to the management, In fact she didn’t speak to the bar person at all. One month later I received a claim stating she had tripped on the carpet when entering the pub. Initially I was not aware of any witnesses, but it turns out that there were and that she didn’t trip but collapsed. Would her solicitor have to cancel the claim?

    • In any claim for personal injury compensation, the claimant is required to demonstrate that their injury was caused by negligence. A defendant has the legal right to mount a defence. Should neither side be willing to accept that the other has a stronger position, the matter must go before a Judge who will independently consider the evidence of both sides before ruling one way or another.

      In the scenario you describe, the claimant has claimed that they have tripped on carpet at the entrance to your premises. As such, they would succeed with their claim if they can demonstrate that the carpet at the entrance way is loose and that it is possible to catch one’s foot underneath the loose edge and that a tripping hazard has been left in situ. To be able to prove this, an accident report should have been made at the time, or statements from independent witnesses or photographs that show the hazard would provide good evidence to support such a claim.

      It would appear that you do not accept this version of events and I assume that there is no such tripping hazard present with the carpet at the entrance to your premises. Given that you appear to have witnesses willing to state on record that this lady collapsed rather than tripped, it is hard to see how any such claim could succeed.

      You should inform your insurers of this claim and provide them with all relevant defence evidence that you can – including the witness information and your own photographs demonstrating that the carpet at the entrance is not a tripping hazard or dangerous in anyway.

      • Once the defendant has received notification of the claim is it correct that they have 3 months 21 days before responding to the claimants solicitors to either deny or admit liability

        • Effectively, yes. From the period of confirmation of the claim by a defendant, it normally takes almost 4 months for them to investigate and respond further. Whilst the response can be obtained sooner, it is rarely the case that the defendants respond any earlier than they have to.

  12. Hi
    I was coming down a travelator with my trolley when I suffered a horrific fall at the bottom when the trolley got stuck and I couldn’t push it off the traveler. Instead it first pushed into my chest and then reared up and I fell backwards, my clothes getting ripped in the travelator. I was in terrible shock but when I saw the CCTV footage it brought back to me that on the way down I was trying hard to keep the trolley straight because the wheels were wonky and it kep veering to the side. Momentarily on the way down I remember thinking that’s why the trolley was abandoned. Anyway took it to a solicitor no win no fee but the store has denied liability. They said they tested the trolley and there was nothing wrong with it. I am amazed because anybody can see trolley wouldn’t come off the travelator. The solicitor has closed the case!!

    • As your Solicitor has closed the claim, it indicates that the defence raised is strong and unlikely to be overturned or ignored by a judge, should this claim go to court. Of course, your Solicitor has also had to write off the costs that they have incurred in attempting to pursue your claim.

      Clearly, you suffered a traumatic incident and it is disappointing to see that your claim failed. Sadly, I don’t see how anyone could take your claim on as the defence issue remains the problem.

  13. Hi my solicitor after 2 1/2 years decided to send an inspector to check the door in the Doctors Surgery where I suffered a severed finger. The expert has reported that the door is fine and that as a result, I have no claim? I am not sure what to do?

    • If the door has been inspected and no defects have been found, it is unlikely that you can do anything as there will be no evidence to support your claim that the defendants are liable.

  14. My employer is currently doing this to me, my witness who saw my accident will not write a statement however the person who wrote a statement has lied and can be proven to be lying in some points of the statement one of which was ‘Dominic couldn’t fill out the accident form as he injured his arm’ yes I injured my left arm however I’m right handed so could easily fill out an accident form?, could I say his statement cannot be believable as he has lied about those things so how can anyone believe anything else he said. It was also this persons fault who wrote the statement and also they filled out a false accident report and signed it on my behalf however it is not my signature so this surely can’t be used as evidence? They also failed to send pictures taken on the day of my accident and only showed ones on another day which can also be proven so would the court be intersted in why they didn’t send the originals? Also as soon as I got to hospital I told them the real reason how I dislocated my shoulder so why would I say that I did it another way on an accident form I apparently filled out at the same time I was in a and e, thanks if you can shed some light on this

    • If you are making a claim for compensation after an accident at work, it is likely that the employers insurance will attempt to defend the claim if they believe that they have a strong case to defend the claim. In this case, it would appear that you are coming up against an issue of the defence having one version of events and you claiming that their version is factually incorrect and even dishonest.

      In such a scenario, you should make your Solicitor aware of the areas falsified by the employer in order that your Solicitor can attempt to prove that they are dishonest and incorrect. Of course, you will have to provide evidence to corroborate your view that the employers have withheld information that would be favourable to your claim and that their reports are incorrect. If you can provide such evidence, you should be able to succeed.

      • Thanks Ian, I was just wondering if you could answer help me with another few things as I’ve learnt more from you than my solicitor has told me in about a year and I appreciate your help it’s really useful! So as I said I had use of my right hand and can prove I’m right handed and it was my left shoulder injured, so the one statement a defendant said is I didn’t sign the accident form because I had no use of my arm, surely a judge would look at that when I explain there was no reason I couldn’t of filled out the form and signed on my own behalf and think he’s blatantly lying? Also they said the manhole was covered with barriers however the picture they sent shows the holes uncovered underneath the scaffold i was erecting at the time and there is no sign of any warning or barrier around or near the hole, would this be enough evidence to make a judge lean in my favour? Please let me know when you have a spare minute thank you ian

        • It is impossible to say for certain which way a Judge will lean when considering a claim and defence. However, the more ‘holes’ you can pick in the defendants defence, the better and as long as your Solicitor is willing to pursue your claim, you should pursue it and try to highlight the discrepancies within the defendants version of events.

  15. hi andy my name is graham i had a accident in 2017 november 10 at a industrial park i went to buy a car of the owners son when i arrived i seen the owner dad in the garage said ive come to see about buying the car he pointed for me to go in the yard to speak to his son he was washing a truck down with another person we spoke for 10 mins so i agreed to buy the car the following week shook hands i began to walk away towards my vechile all of a sudden i slipted back very fast on to hard floor flat on my back the pain was bad i noticed when i looked at them they just looked at me and didnt even bother to help me up i started to get up slowley i put my hand on my back as the pain was bad all this chemical went on my hands a grey liquid like chemical vaseline type i said whats this on the floor and on my hands he said sorry mate i dont know anything about it must of came of one of these trucks i dont nowt about it i looked at the trucks there was aload of them parked up like storage sumit i was annoyed and left as to the denial of what he said is dad was seen me fall but didnt say out either my so was sat in my car he seen me fall to he is autistic as i drove out of these premise i wet round the corner to pick up my ex and her work college from work they seen the state i was in chemicals on my coat and sore back neck i made a appointment straight away with my doc same day eveing so i could be looked at injures etc she said i have whiplash she didnt know what the chemical was i went ae few days later i contacted a solicter no win no fee as iam not working he took the case on from 2017 since soliceter as been trying to contact them from the start accident they hadnt been answering his letters now they are denying any accident has happend there saying nothing did this has led my soliceter saying to me today it might be difficult to prove my word against theres and not looking good for my case i told him cant it go to court judge can decied my 2 witneeses and my son in the car he said no because be cost to me iam feeling down now as i was injured my back neck and with the chemical on my hands not knowing what it was my health getting worst the trucks in that compound carry hazards chemicals waste seen it on the internet so now iam worried about this with no answers i have the coat still it has been through the wash i dont know if it could be tested to see what was on it lab etc iam now worried about my claim fearing i will lose because they say it never happend and health is getting worse ive lost stone in weight in less than year unexspected and severe back neck pain my left arm as got a unexpected pain top havent been able to move it back or up for 2 months bowel movement change sore hands some times feel like iam seizing up i dont know what to do so ive told you hoping you could help or give me some info what to do these people family run buisness shouldnt be able to get of with this by denying it ever happend when they was there when i fell in front of them owner son staff thank you for reding this long story but true graham

    • The issue here is proving what happened and where. Given the lack of independent witnesses or an accident book record, it is a fairly simply matter for the defendants to simply deny any responsibility.

      • thaks ian for getting back to me the problem on the day of the accident was its a family run buisness a small yard fenced on a industrial estate other small buiness near by which would be easier for them to say no accident happened here less witnesses the only person on the site who seen me fall was my son who is autistic sat in the car on the complex could i use my son as a witness with autisim or may be my ex partner who was round the corner when i came out of the site injured and seen the state i was in i did go docters that day for the accident and a few days later reguarding accident book i thought they as owners would have put that accident in there and i wasnt to well after the fall and wasnt aware of there procedjures what would you suggest i do to try prove my case thank you graham

  16. Hi my work have denied liabilty i had a fall down curved stairs that had no handrail i fractured my tibia and femur my work installed a handrail 3 days later i was off work for 9 months can they deny?

    • Have you been represented in this claim by a specialist Solicitor? If not, it may be worth having the employers denial of liability reviewed by one of our specialist accident at work Solicitors.

      With regards to your accident, the lack of a handrail may not necessarily indicate that they were negligent and therefore liable for any injury you sustained. The fact that they had a handrail fitted 3 days after your accident could be seen as the employer acting correctly to ensure that nobody else would fall down the stairs.

  17. Hi Ian,I work on the railway on a 0 hr contract. The company I work for is a sub-contracting agency and they had me working for a large contracting firm. The large contracting firm is not accepting liability for the injury I sustained when I dropped a large concrete block on my finger tip. The injury was such that the finger tip was removed later in Hospital.

    Appropriate vehicles were not provided by the employers resulting in the accident. My lawyer reckons I have a solid claim and agrees the large company is at fault. This is his opinion that as it was their contract and the job was under their site managers instruction.,However they seem to believe my sub agency is at fault under a contract which was signed in previous years. My sub agency employer also denies responsibility.

    My lawyer has given them 5 weeks, which ends next Tuesday or he is willing to take both to court (after a further 2 week cooling off period if nobody’s accepted responsibility).

    They’re really both blaming each other. Both believe they have a good case in defence. What will happen in the end? Could it really go to court or will somebody accept liability and work to settle the claim appropriately? Also is this better financially for me it going to court? Many thanks

    • Given your current Solicitors view that you have a solid claim it is a good indicator that someone is liable and in this case, it can only be one of (or both!) two parties – the sub contractor for whom you work or the main contract holder for whom you were operating on the day.

      If neither party is willing to accept liability the only solution would be to put it before a court and allow a judge to make a decision. Whilst it is not that common in the UK for personal injury claims to reach court, the court process is there to resolve issues such as the one you cite.

  18. Hi Ian, Hope you can help, I’m a landlord and have a tenant that fell while holding his child, on the unadopted road leading to my property. He has injured himself quite badly and has now put in a claim. I have no ownership of the road whatsoever and no maintenance company. However, I do have a shared responsibility for the cost of the maintenance on the road on my deeds, keeping it maintain has been an issue getting everyone to agree as a result the road is in a mess and he has tripped as a result and is claiming against the nearest property to the trip which isn’t myself .. Should i be worried ?

    • As you will appreciate, it is hard to give specific advice without understanding the nature of the accident site and location. Given that there is a shared responsibility for maintenance of the unadopted road, it could be that all parties with shared responsibility could be held liable. However, if the tenant’s Solicitor is addressing the claim to one property owner then it could be that they are the only ones to face action.

      You mention that there has been difficulty in reaching agreement on the maintenance of the road. It would be helpful to you if you and any others who have been willing to cooperate support each other by outlining the collective efforts you have made to have the area repaired and also indicate those who have failed to cooperate and therefore caused the issues at hand.

  19. On holiday in May (in Sri Lanka), my foot went through a drain cover alongside the pool and I went down the hole up to my knee. My calf was bruised and grazed but throughout the rest of the holiday the pain got gradually worse to the point it was keeping me awake and I was in pain on walking. On seeking medical advice on my return I was found to have a DVT and was advised that it was more than likely to have been caused by the injury. I have had a solicitor acting on my behalf and after 6 months the travel company insurers have responded denying liability stating that they have spoken to all staff on duty that day in the area and nobody remembers the incident. When I fell I was aided by at least 2 members of staff one being a barman who gave me a bag of ice and I believe the other was a pool attendant. I have two independent witnesses to the incident also. There was also CCTV cameras in the area, however as they have taken so long to respond I don’t know if footage would still be available. My solicitor had now advised that she is no longer able to continue on a no win no fee basis as she feels it will be difficult to prove the DVT would be caused by the injury (even though no medical opinion has been sought by them) and because they deny liability. As I have independent witnesses to the incident and several other people that were aware of the issues I suffered after it whilst on holiday I feel I want to pursue my claim especially given that it has had a huge impact on my life. (It developed into pulmonary embolism and I spent 2 weeks hospitalised). I feel that the solicitor fell at the first hurdle in that she did not challenge their denial in any way even though they appear to have investigated their records for the incorrect incident date. Is this worth pursuing?

    • When a Solicitor fails with a claim or opts to close the matter, it usually indicates a serious problem with the strength of the claim and therefore it may be likely that a new Solicitor would reach the same point of view. However, this is not necessarily the case and it could be that a new Solicitor takes a different view.

      To that end, we can arrange for one of our specialist Solicitor partners to speak with you and give an undertaking to review the file from your previous Solicitor in order that they can decide whether or not they could take the matter further on a No Win No Fee basis.

  20. Hi I had a accident while at work for a large hotel company when I was directed to use a old trolley which was in poor condition. I tested it in the morning and it weelled out of the stock room simally fine. When I return to it later that day the weel buckelled while i was pushing it and became stuck, causing me back pain straight away which made me have to leave work early. I have never return and after 7 months of sick note I was sacked one month for sending sick note late. I have started a claim in which my old employer are claiming my accident happened the day before (which is a lie) so are disputing it even though it’s in the accident book. My lawyer is now in the process of seeking advice from a barrister. He said even though the accident is recorded I booked my first visit to the doctors 2 and a half months after it happened which I have explained i was self medicating before my doctors was a bit out the way and the painkillers were helping. I also didn’t seek legal advice until around 8 weeks after the fact because i was hoping to return to work. I’m with a no win no fee company and they do not want to move forward until we hear back from the barrister. Do you think I have a claim. It’s been over a year now since it happened and my back pain has gotten worse instead of better I haven’t been able to return to employment and i feel like this hasnt only ruined my life but also my 14 year old daughter as its as if she hasssnow become my career, this accident has completely change our life. Thank you for any advice you can give. Lee

    • It is important for the Barristers (counsel) opinion to be received as this will give strong indication as to the likely outcome of the claim and will also give expert perspective as to the best way forward for you and your Solicitor.

  21. Hi you have been recommended to me and I am going to put a claim through yourselves. 4 weeks ago a car hit the front drivers side of vehicle after pulling out of a junction. They admitted liability and I have it on dashcam. My insurance company also confirmed was non fault on my side. I have had the vehicle repaired.
    Now 4 weeks on I have noticed my Lower back is increasing in pain and I have slight pain in right side of neck. Maybe whiplash? I noticed this with a week of accident but not going away so I think I’m within my rights to make a claim and am going to pursue this.
    I have a question before I do this.
    In 2014 a vehicle drove into rear of my vehicle. Again they admitted liability and my insurance company recommended a solicitor as I had a couple of minor injuries. I went for medical that solicitor organised and few month after was successful in the claim.
    Now I know that if you take this claim for me and I have a medical examination they will ask about previous accidents. As I have nothing to hide I would tell them about this but the issue is I can not remember the exact injuries I got. I rang my gp as I want to know exactly what they were but they told me they have no record of any injuries from then. They went on to explain that if a solicitor instructed a medical examination it would not be sent to the gp as it is a private and the solicitor would have it on file. The problem is I can not remember who the solicitor was.
    So what would happen at the medical examination if I can not remember the injuries. They were minor but if my gp has no record and I can’t get the record what would i do?
    I just want to be fully prepared before I pursue this claim.
    Thank you

    • We look forward to helping you make your claim for compensation. The question you ask is a valid one and it is important to consider medical evidence and to note any previous or pre-existing injuries/conditions when making any claim.

      The answer to your main question is easily provided. If you attended your GP or a Hospital at any stage after the 2014 incident, your medical records will make note of any symptoms you reported and any treatments provided. If you did not report anything to your GP or a Hospital, the only record of any previous injuries will be within your previous Solicitors file of papers. If you do not have any record of who you instructed it is not possible for you to obtain that information. However, we do not feel that you need be concerned. The best course of action would be to disclose this to our specialist Solicitor at the very outset of the claims process and act on their advice as to what you should state and when.

      • OK thank you this is helpful. Obviously I would volunteer to the medical examiner that I have been in a previous accident and the injuries were minor I just don’t t want to be in a position if it went to court, not likely I know but if it did for me to look like I am trying to hide something if they was to have that medical report but as you say only the solicitor would have a access to it. Is it possible the courts could get it even if I don’t know where it is? I appreciate the advice and will call you after Christmas it’s just good to know where I stand before I start the process and as I said you have been highly recommend and thank you.

  22. Hello Ian, I wonder if you could help.I am inthe process of makinga claim for compensation against my local council for a trip on a public path.initially my solicitor seemed to think my clain was legitimate but this is the response Dear Mr Mellor.
    I find some of their comments strange and the pictures they presented are very selective and do not show the whole picture!

    The Council have investigated the circumstances surrounding your accident
    which we understand occurred on 9/10/2018.
    You will be aware that there is no automatic right to compensation in such
    circumstances and the Council, as Highway Authority, will only become
    liable to pay compensation when the accident can be said to have arisen due
    to fault on their part.
    To comply with their duties under the Highways Act 1980 the Council operate
    a system for inspection and maintenance of the roads and footpaths for
    which they are responsible.
    The locus where the accident occurred is examined on a regular 6 monthly
    basis and at the date of the last inspection prior to the accident, which
    took place on 18/4/2018 , no actionable defect was evident nor have there
    been any subsequent reports submitted to the Council notifying them of a
    problem at this location. A further inspection was carried out 6 days after
    your accident, again no actionable defects were observed.
    The Council also have no knowledge of any other work undertaken by
    contractors that may have contributed towards the defect.

    The defect is a degraded section of bitmac near the kerb. You will see
    from the SCO photographs that the abrupt edge is less than 20mm and we do
    not consider it to be dangerous, particularly as the abrupt edge runs along
    the length of the footpath, not the width.

    Notwithstanding that we do not consider the defect to be dangerous (the
    writer and SCO live very close by to this area and the footpath has been in
    that condition for years) we have taken a decision to repair the area on a
    non-priority basis, as the footpath is very close to the entrance of Percy
    Hedley School and the area is used by a number of wheelchair users.

    On the basis of the information presented we consider that the Council have
    complied with their duties under the Highways Act 1980 and we see no
    evidence that it has arisen due to neglect or breach of duty on their part.
    Whilst we are very sorry to learn of this accident liability is denied and
    we are unable to make any offer of compensation.
    McMahon Claims Handler
    Zurich Insurance plc
    5th Floor East
    Hadrian House
    from the Councils insurers.

    • The defendants appear to have a strong defence (on the basis of this letter anyway) in your claim. As such, it could prove hard to succeed with your claim.

      The letter is correct in pointing out what the courts will look for and what they will consider to be a breach of the local highways agency obligations under the Highways Act 1980. The key thing in claims for tripping accident compensation claims when someone has tripped on a public highway footpath is proving that the defect is actionable (it must usually exceed a drop or rise of 25mm or 1 inch) and that it has been in situ for a considerable period of time. The council in your case are saying that they inspected the locus just before your accident and not long after and didn’t find any defect to repair. That could spell bad news in your claim. However, all is not lost. Depending on the size of the defect, if it was in situ at the time as you claim, is there an argument that the council inspection regime is inadequate? Your Solicitor needs to find out how the inspection was carried out – on foot or drive by. If it was drive by, a Judge may agree that it was not adequate and that such a hazard would easily be missed. The other thing you can seek to do is locate a Section 58 Hazard Witness – this is not a witness to the accident, but someone with good knowledge of the area (resident or regular visitor) who has seen the hazard in situ and can vouch for the condition of it, the size and roughly how long it has been present. If you can do this and present such a statement, it will undermine the highways authority denial of liability.

  23. we were claiming for an accident that took place in a block of flats my partner was leaving his parent flat and when he approuched the lift area he slipped, he is an amputee and was on crutches and the floor was still wet and his crutches went from under neath him making him fall on to his limb which then caused him to fracture his hip in which he had to undergo surgery and was hospitalised for over a week. they were no wet signs out to warn people of this, also they were another worker who saw they were no sign and stated they dont always put them out. but now they are claiming they are not liable and the other worker is saying the floors were dry and there was a sign out. all papers were sent to them his medical paper about his surgery ect but when they have sent a statement what they have found saying they did have sign and floors were dry ect but they have stated he had a fracture to lower leg? were this came from i dont no as they have his discharge and what surgery he had done do we contest this.

    • Are you using a specialist Solicitor to pursue this claim? On face value, the claim would seem strong – wet floor, no hazard signs in situ. However, the defendants appear to be using a questionable version of events from their own staff to defend the claim.

      You should draw the discrepancies in the defendant responses to the attention of your Solicitor at the earliest opportunity and contest this further.

    • The simple answer is yes! In claims where a claimants has to accept an element of contributory negligence with regards to how they came to be injured, they will still receive compensation. However, the amount received will be lower than if they were able to attach 100% liability to the defendant.

  24. Hi,

    A few days ago we had an electrician and a plumber coming to fix out toilet. They could not fix it as apparently we need a new pipe. There is a manhole in front of our house which they opened and inspected. A few days later, I was reaching for a plastic recycling box when I stood on the manhole and fell in to it with a half of my body and injured myself. I have a nasty bruise on my hip, my knee and I am also having a problem with my back. I went to the Doctor and got some anti-inflammatory tablets and was advised to come back if needed. What can i do to make a claim? Shall I call the company first to let them know what happened and see what they say?

    Thank you

    • If you fell through the manhole because the workers who had lifted the cover a few days previously had failed to replace it securely (negligence) you do have a right to make a claim for compensation. In your case, the main issue is likely to be proving that the manhole cover had either been replaced incorrectly or that it was not safe. As such, you should definitely report the accident to the company who came out to attend your property and advise them that you have fallen through the manhole cover.

      Hopefully you have some photographic evidence of the manhole cover fallen through after your accident? If so, this could provide some useful evidence to support a claim for compensation. If you do have photographs, please email them to us ( so that we can review them and advise you further as to your claim for compensation.

    • The employment issues you mention are something that you should immediately discuss with a specialist employment law Solicitor. With regards to the accident at work issue, please elaborate in terms of what happened to you and we can then advise you as to whether or not you can make a claim for accident at work compensation.

  25. Hi Ian,

    Just curious as to a possible situation similar to what you describe above but wondering who is liable. Situation – drunk person falls down a staircase in a block of flats run by the residents with share of free hold and the building insurance has denied liability. Who’s now liable if the claim is persued? Are the residents personal assets in danger or does it end with the residents association with the only asset being the freehold itself?

    Thanks in advance.

    • The individual residents would not face personal liability, any liability would go with the building management company or insurance. However, more importantly, if someone fell down the stairs, to succeed with a claim for compensation, they would have to demonstrate that the stairs were hazardous and that the building management company knew of the hazard and were liable. You mention that the person who fell was drunk. If their intoxication was the cause of their fall, they have no claim.

      • Hi Ian, thank you for the answer. What would happen in the circumstance of the residents not having a management company and taking care of things themselves. Where does the buck stop exactly in this event?

        • If the residents are tenants, they would have no relationship to any action that may follow. If the residents own the premises and communal areas, there is a possibility that the ‘shared ownership’ group could have a joint responsibility should any action be taken. However, what is really at issue is the cause of any incident that lead to any action. Was there negligence? If so, by whom? Was it reasonable to expect those that own the premises or have responsibility for the maintenance and management of the premises to have prevented the incident?

  26. I do a market stall on a Tuesday flea market but the person who as my stall on the new market weds fri and sat put up mental bars in a step shape I asked the market manger to remove the bars for months 3week ago a member of the public fell over the bars and im disputing the claim as the bars do not belong to me nor did I put the bars up the bloke who owns the the bars as admitted the bars are his but because he wasn’t using the stall on the Tuesday he is liable am I right to dispute this

    • Given our expertise as a representative of people making claims for personal injury compensation, the question you raise of defending a claim against you is something that should be addressed to your Public Liability insurance provide rather than us.

      However, if you did not erect the bars and had requested that they be removed you may have a good defence to present.

  27. Hi, I have an accident at work. I worked as a self-employed in LTD company. In that company, I worked for more than 3 years. And my taxes were deducted and I was paid by weekly wages every week, the company was paying for some of my tools I never worked for the price work or in other jobs without the company knowing.
    1. Can I be described as an employed?
    2. I worked in the building and I was told about the hazard day before from another person (not the boss) as he never came on site that day. But no one did anything to prevent the accident no signs or barriers were placed only by word of the mouth :/ day before. Is that my fault for an accident as I been told day before?
    3. Ho will be responsible if a company don`t have employe liability insurance and have only public liability and public liability decides to not take that case? Is that mean if in a company bank account £1 only, so for me no point to even claim?

    • The situation/scenario you describe is exactly why No Win No Fee personal injury compensation claim services are so vital and important. You have clearly had an accident that was not your fault – the employer should have ensured that the hazard was clearly marked or blocked with barriers. Their failure to do this puts them in breach of Health and Safety regulations.

      Although you are unsure as to the insurance cover held by the employer and have concerns about how any claim against the employer will be handled at their end, you can pursue the matter with us on a No Win No Fee basis, safe in the knowledge that should the defendant either not have appropriate cover/funds to settle your claim or if the claim were to fail, you would not have to pay any costs.

      At Direct2Compensation we will assess the prospects of your claim and then our specialist Solicitors will run a risk assessment. If we decide that we will pursue your claim on a No Win No Fee basis, we take the financial risk should the claim fail and not you.

  28. I was hit by a driver who was taxed and insured. I have the police investigating as another driver has dash can footage of the incident. Completely the other drivers fault but he is saying he sold the car on that day (convienent) and is not admitting fault. Do I have a case?

    • Yes, you have a valid claim for road traffic accident compensation in this matter. Ideally, the Police will demonstrate that the driver is the person claiming to have sold the car (if the dash cam footage provides such evidence). If the Police can do this, you will be able to claim against their insurance for the damage to your vehicle, your personal injury and any loss of income or incurred costs. However, if the Police cannot prove that the driver was there and the sale of the car story proves to be true, you can still pursue a claim for compensation, but not against the insurers. You would have to address any claim through the MIB uninsurerd/untraced driver scheme, which would enable you to pursue a claim for personal injury and loss of income but perhaps not for the damage to your vehicle.

      At Direct2Compensation, our specialist Solicitors can assist you with a No Win No Fee claim for compensation on either basis. Please call us on 01225430285 or use the ‘start a claim’ page of our website to take this further.

  29. I had a fall last year on ice. The restaurants fire exits were open all night without supervision which led onto a area which was poorly light and I slipped on ice hitting my chin full force off the ground I tried to get up and it was so bad the exact same thing happened a second time. This caused severe Whiplash and has also caused my jaw bone to be out of place. I’ve been dealing with back and neck pain for 11 months now which is managed with prescribed pain medication. The restaurants insurers have still not come back with a decision on liability (which they should have by September) do I have strong case?

    • Essentially, if a hazard has been allowed to remain present – such as this ice – as a result of negligence or inaction, you can pursue a claim with confidence.

      In your case, it would be a good idea for us to have a telephone conversation regarding your accident and the events of the past year of dealing with the insurers in order that we can get a full understanding as to what happened and how.

      We can then advise you properly as to your prospects of succeeding with a claim for compensation.

      Please email your contact number to me ( & I will call you to discuss this further.

  30. Hi, I have an accident at work and it is 100% employer fault. I have solicitors and is 5 months gone after claim start and I still can`t get any answers from my solicitors. Them saying them still not get any response from the third party insurer. Question how long it can take for third party insurance to take response denying or accept the case? Thanks

    • Defendant insurers are afforded a lengthy period to respond to a claim. From the date of a claim being submitted, they can take up to around 4 months to respond. If they do not respond within that time frame, the Solicitor will put them on notice that they need to respond within a certain time frame (usually a further 4-6 weeks) or face court action.

      You should contact your Solicitor to see if they are going to take the matter to court to force the 3rd party insurer to cooperate.

  31. Why, after 2 years of claiming personal injury compensation for an accident in which I severed my finger on a closing door whilst coming out of a Doctors room, are my Solicitors raising concerns about my case? They are saying it is a hard case to prove as I have to prove that the door was faulty. So, now 2 years on, they are sending an engineer to check the door in the surgery. Surely it is now too late? I am thinking of a second opinion – could you advise?

    • I would imagine that your Solicitors are acting on the basis of a defence or denial of liability from the defendant insurers and yes, it is beholden upon you and your Solicitor to prove your claim – which would be to argue that the door was faulty. If the door is shown to be satisfactory you may struggle with your claim.

      As long as the door is the same as it was when you were injured, the fact that 2 years have passed since your accident will not matter as the engineer will be able to find any possible hazards and report them to your Solicitor.

      I do not think it would be wise or helpful to switch Solicitors at this stage.

  32. I fell on a bus and hit my head when the bus harshly jerked. I didn’t tell the driver at the time as just thought it would be OK.

    It turns out I had a concussion and was nauseas, fatigued, severe migraines, earaches, painkillers and ringing in my ears and memory loss. This was four months ago and I still get headaches, earaches and forgetfullness. My Doctor says it could be Post Concussion Syndrome.

    I have tried to make a claim but liability was denied as they say they have deleted cctv evidence so now I can’t prove it happened. They said i told them too late but I told the bus company’s insurer just 2 days after accident and the insurer failed to ask the bus company for the cctv until weeks later.

    Is this claim still worth pursuing ? It has affected my life, work and day to day living .

    • Sadly, it is likely that any further pursuit of this claim would end up with the same response as there is no evidence available to support your claim. Do you have any witnesses to the incident?

  33. I went on an instructor led horse riding trek in the UK. I am an experienced rider, however this trek was a walk for beginners, of whom my partner is one. I signed a form detailing my level of expertise etc, which included the line “I am aware that horse back riding is a dangerous activity and I ride at my own risk”

    A horse was presented to me already saddled up, and ready to go, at a mounting block. There was no opportunity or instruction for me to check any equipment. On the ride my saddle slipped fully round the horse, but fortunately I felt it move and jumped off to one side landing on my feet.
    The instructor came over, and refitted the saddle, and i carried on with the ride. 5 minutes later the saddle slipped fully to the right, this time with no opportunity to react. I hit the ground, landing on one side.
    The instructor then came back and swapped my saddle for the one on the horse she was riding, stating that the saddle was too small. I managed to get back on and continue the last 10 mins of the ride.
    She contacted the stable owner to inform him of the accident by telephone. On return to the stable, both the owner and the instructor left within minutes with another trek, and with noone to speak to I went home.
    I presented at the hospital that night and was found to have a fractured shoulder, full torn rotator cuff and depression injury. I have since had surgery, with an 18-24 month rehabilitaton.

    My personal injury solicitors haven’t taken statements in the 6 months since the accident (I claimed the same week as the injury was sustained), and have basically made no headway.
    I have today found out that the insurer has denied responsibility.
    My questions are twofold – one is that although I rode at my own risk, I was surely within my rights to expect the equipment provided to be adequate and safe
    Secondly, although my claim handler will be going back with further information to the insurer, I have little or no faith that I am being represented properly, can I change solicitors at this stage without cost to me?

    • To answer your first point, yes – the riding stables have a responsibility to provide safe and secure equipment. In this case the saddle appears to have a fault that should have been located during maintenance and inspection of the equipment. On that score, there is a claim to be made and it is for the stables to mount a robust defence if they believe they can.

      On the second point, yes – you can switch Solicitors if you can find a new Solicitor willing to take over the running of the claim. In most cases, a new Solicitor will give a written undertaking to the previous Solicitor to cover any costs incurred by them as and when a claim succeeds. However, it is not always in your best interests to switch Solicitors and should only be done as a last resort. To that end, before you reach that point you should make a formal complaint to your existing Solicitors so that your grievance can be aired, investigated and hopefully settled. The Solicitors with whom your instructions lay at this time should have a complaints procedure published on their website. Refer to that and go through the process with them. If they are unable to resolve your complaint, you can at that point seek to switch firms.

  34. Hi I was involved in a rear end shunt back in Feb ’18. The 3rd party insurer admitted liability the very same day, via phone call. I was in a lease car that was provided by another insurance company following a previous 3rd party collision, yes I’ve had a run of bad luck!!! I underwent physio, which ended in June ’18. My problem is this, the solicitors I instructed were recommended to me by the lease car company whose car had been rear ended. At every step, I have had to contact them for updates and to find out what’s happening. I have now been told the 3rd party insurer, wish to examine the lease car to ascertain the damage sustained. Accident happened on 10th February!!! And I’ve been advised ” that until all heads of claim have been dealt with ” that my claim for personal injuries are now put on a back burner until the car has been examined. Is this the case?! In my own head I’m thinking that I instructed the solicitors to deal with my injuries and the damage to both cars would be done between the 3rd party insurer and the lease company because the damage to both cars is not my fault, as already admitted and accepted by the 3rd parties insurer on the day!!!

    • You should demand a full explanation of the circumstances from the people pursuing your claim in order that they can explain the situation to you in a way that satisfies your concerns. You could make a formal complaint against them if you feel it relevant.

  35. Hello, I was washing my hands in a public toilet at a petrol station and suffered 2nd degree burns to my hands from the hot water tap. There was no hot water signs up in the toilet so I wasn’t aware the water would be so hot. Am I able to make a claim based on this? Thanks

    • If the water from the taps was sufficiently hot to cause 2nd degree burns to your hands and known to be of such a temperature, there should have been a warning sign in situ to advise of the risk of such an injury. Alternatively, if there was a fault on the boiler that day that lead to the water being heated to a dangerous level, you would also have a valid claim against the service station.

      Did you report the accident at the time or subsequently? Was an accident book entry completed?

      We would be very happy to help you further with a claim for compensation and we recommend that you make contact with us on 01225430285 or by using our ‘start a claim’ page so that we can help you proceed with a claim for compensation.

  36. I’m dealing with the insurance company of a large store. There was ice on a parking lot and I broke my ankle and have been off work for a few months. The insurance company for the parking lot maintenance company sent me an email and it said please be advised that this is a liability issue and that they would get back to me as soon as they have the rest of my medical records. Does that mean they accept the liability or does it mean they don’t know who’s liable?

    • It is hard to be certain what they mean, so it would be worthwhile clarifying with them as to whether they are accepting responsibility or not.

  37. I tripped over a manhole cover and the council said as the depth was between 10mm and 12mm they were not liable. They said they inspect the pavements regularly and they did not admit liability. I’ve a broken elbow, torn ligaments to my hand recovery us going to take months. All due to tripping over the lowered manhole cover. Seems most unfair.

    • Given the injuries you sustained when you tripped over the raised access cover, I can understand why you feel that the local authorities refusal to accept any liability is unfair.

      However, if the hazard protruded by 10-12mm from the surrounding surface, it is unlikely that a court would find the highways agency liable in this matter. In previous case law, it has been decided that an actionable tripping hazard should exceed or fall below the surrounding surface level by 25mm or more. Further, in your case it sounds as if the local authority can demonstrate that they regularly inspect the highways and footpaths in their area and this would give them a solid defence should any claim proceed.

  38. I recently got injured by an automatic door in a petrol station. As I stood in the doorway calling to my friend out on the forecourt, my head became trapped in the door as it shut on me. I couldn’t get free for a bit, but after a frenzied attempt I freed myself. I have had a previous neck surgery, resulting in a titanium three level cage. The stress of this incident has created so much pain and discomfort for me.

    I requested the CCTV footage from the petrol station the following day. However they said they didn’t have any footage so I contacted my local authority about the door. As a result of my reporting the door to the local authority, the door was examined by health and safety and deemed safe. However they were told there was footage of my accident. When I asked if they had watched it they said they hadn’t! I am really frustrated that I was told there wasn’t any footage but have now found out that health and safety did not watch it.

    I have had to have an x-ray on my neck, had physio, taken strong painkillers and have had to ask social services to give me support as I am a full time carer. I feel deeply affected by what happened to me – which was witnessed by my friend. I have contacted the garage directly now and said that I have been advised to request the footage under the data protection act, but I cannot work out why the health and safety inspector checking the doors did not look at the footage. Do you feel I have a case?

    • We have previously pursued and succeeded with claims where people have been injured by an automatic door that has closed on them unexpectedly. The type of door you were injured by would usually have some sort of sensor fitted that ensures that the door opens when someone is within the sensor range and prevents it from closing if there is something in the way. Although the health and safety inspector who checked the door found it to be safe during their inspection, it would appear that the sensor had a fault on the day on which you were injured.

      You have done the right things following your accident to protect your rights going forward – reporting the matter to both the garage in question and your local authority. You have also had medical treatment. As such, my initial view is that you should pursue a claim for compensation. We work on a fully no win no fee basis so you would be able to pursue a claim without risking your own finances.

      We would be very happy to pursue this matter for you and invite you to either call us on 01225430285 or use our website to submit your details for us to call you.

  39. I slipped on a wet floor. When I got up (being helped by a member of public) I noticed a staff member was washing the floors. I didn’t see any wet sign notices. I was on a lot of pain as I twisted my ankle and hurt me knee. I left very quickly because it was quite public and most of the staff were laughing about it.
    However I did ask to see the cctv of the incident. They refused and passed the matter on to their insurers.
    I didn’t take time off work because had two weeks holiday (it ruined my holiday). Also I knew I had just soft tissue damage because nothing more serious (so didn’t go to the hospital).
    It has taken them over 15 weeks to come back to me about liability and I have a feeling they will deny liability.
    I have no idea what to do next.

    • You definitely need a specialist personal injury Solicitor with good knowledge and experience with occupier liability claims to make sure that you succeed with your claim for compensation.

      We have some real experts in this area, so if you don’t already have a Solicitor acting for you, call us on 01225430285. Our team will take some initial information and then pass your claim to the right specialist Solicitor who will act for you.

  40. I had an accident where the courts found i was not liable, can my insurance company still refuse my claim for damages

    • If you are not liable, it would indicate that someone/another business is liable. As such, any claim for damages should be addressed to the liable party rather than through your own insurers.

      If you would like help to make a claim for compensation, please call us on 01225430285 or use our ‘start a claim’ page.

  41. My husband was walking our dog on New Years Eve, our dog was happily playing with a German shepherd and after a while my husband called our dog back (Labrador) who came back immediately, my husband turned to continue his walked unaware the German shepherd had decided to chase our dog running full pelt into my husbands leg, snapping his knee in two places, resulting in a tibial plateau fracture which required ORIF surgery leaving him 7months (ongoing) recovery.
    The dog owner admitted liability, happily gave us her insurance details and a claim for compensation was put forward only to receive a letter from said insurance company denying any and all liability, stating her dog wasn’t running although my husbands surgeon told us he usually sees this kind of injury by a collision with a car.

    My husband has had a Dexa scan which confirmed his bone density is normal so we can’t understand how they can blantantly lie when the injury clearly proves otherwise.

    We would very much like to Persue this claim and would welcome your advise with proceeding.

    • How frustrating! You describe what seems a straightforward case but this is clearly a ‘case’ of one persons word against another. Despite the German Shepherd’s owners initial admission of liability and provision of her insurance details, who knows what she has said to her own insurers when they have asked her for her version of events.

      Do you have any independent witnesses who can add weight to your Husband’s version of events?

      • Thanks for your response, there were not witnesses to the accident but she told two paramedics her dog had rub into him as well as up to 50 people offering to help as unfortunately being New Year’s Eve the ambulance took 2.5 hrs to get there, I believe some of these witnesses could be found if needed as a lot of locals were out walking that morning. Her insurance company are not disputing her dog caused the accident, their reason for no liability is that our dog was also off the lead and that my husband clearly knew the dog was going to collide with him so he should’ve moved

  42. We were hit by a car on the motorway – it was side impact and the driver of the vehicle claims that “they think” another car was turning into her lane which made her swerve and subsequently hit us. The police report confirms that she hit us and her statement of another car however there are no witnesses to this phantom car. There is no cctv available as the camera was not facing the right way. Is this clean cut to claim? I have a ruptured bicep & psychological damage as I have not been able to drive on the motorway again.

    • It would appear that you have a valid claim for road traffic accident compensation and the injuries you describe (particularly the psychological aspect) are common in such road traffic collisions on high speed roads. Whether or not the person who collided with you believed that there was a 3rd party vehicle encroaching on their lane space is somewhat irrelevant in that it was their vehicle that hit yours and as such, a claim should be made against the insurers of that vehicle. That insurer may then in turn wish to re-direct the claim to the other insurers if they can be found.

      Do you know if any admission of liability has been made with regards to vehicle repairs?

      • Thank you for your reply. The insurance company have paid out for our car that was written off in the collision. They did not state with the payment that it was a goodwill gesture nor have they accepted liability as they are arguing it should go to MIB as the supposed “third car” is at fault .we are still out of pocket all our damaged items & holiday we were on our way to.

  43. Is it breaking health and safety laws if a workplace doesn’t put up caution hot water signs next to hot water taps? I’m strongly thinking about putting a claim in for a burn injury from a faulty tap thanks

  44. I had an accident at work, I felt very dizzy while on the stairs and I fell all the way down 10 steps. The aircon hasn’t been working for more than a month, it was very hot and I believe this is the reason that I collapsed and fell.

    I hit my left leg with a big bruise, my left elbow with a superficial cut, my back and right shoulder. Nothing is fractured luckily, but I have been advised from my doctor to do some physiotherapy to recover my shoulder. Is the employer responsible?
    They are denying the existence of an insurance covering my accident and the aircon hasn’t been fixed yet with an inside temperature of 29C degrees.

    • This is a difficult one as to succeed with your claim you would have to prove that the cause of your collapse was a direct result of the lack of air con. As you can imagine, this will be difficult to establish.

      • I understand this…not taking in consideration the reason of my fall but only the fact that I fell on the stairs a
        while carrying out my duties at work, is the employer responsible to take care of my recovery?
        Is working without aircon an hazard during hot season and having all other collegues and clients complaining about the heat?

  45. I was scalded in the face and suffered whiplash when a tap at work exploded boiling in my face, this tap had no caution hot water signs above it and was never or very rarely checked for faults could my employer be at fault here?

    • Is it breaking health and safety laws if a workplace doesn’t put up caution hot water signs next to hot water taps?

  46. Hello Ian,
    My daughter claims to have been indecently assaulted by a security guard at a hotel at which we were guests. The security guard has denied that anything happened. There is no evidence that what my daughter said is true as it was an indecent assault. The guard apparently hugged her and placed his tongue in her ear.

    Please advise if I may be able to successfully claim under the security guard’s employer’s public liability insurance, that is if they have.

    • As you rightly point out, the problem here is the lack of independent evidence to support any claim. Whilst we have no reason to doubt your daughters version of events, without any evidence to support the claim it is unlikely that a Solicitor would be able to offer to pursue the matter on a No Win No Fee basis.

      The best thing to do – if you haven’t already done so – would be to try and obtain witness information or any other supportive evidence against the security guard and ask the Hotel if they have any CCTV footage available.

  47. I was injured during physical training at work but my employer is denying liability. Surely in a training setting, whereby we should be being monitored there should be no dispute as to them being at fault.

    • When you say that your employer is denying liability, are you saying that you already have a claim in place and a Solicitor pursuing this for you? If not, the situation you describe is something that we would be happy to investigate for you.

      We have previously succeeded with claims against employers where staff members were injured during physical training exercises, with NHS workers injured during training as to how to handle aggressive patients being one example.

  48. My daughter was involved in a wing mirror clip. The other party would not exchange insurance at the scene but demanded £50 to polish out a scratch to their car. After the bank holiday weekend, they changed that to £1600. We took it to insurance and discovered they had added a ghost passenger and made two PI claims as well. They produced 2 witnesses. I found those witnesses on Facebook and the other driver ended up dropping her claim which also included a personal injury claim. The husband and ghost passenger, continue with their claims and want 50/50 – although her made up, dramatic collision story against my daughter collapsed. So it goes on, causing my daughter enormous stress and worry. Can I claim against them for mental stress and fraud?

    • Whilst the actions of the other driver have been extremely bad and seemingly fraudulent, for you to succeed against them with a claim for psychological stress and trauma would be difficult. This is because such a claim would not be without risk and as such, for a specialist Solicitor to pursue this claim it is unlikely that they would wish to do so on a No Win No Fee basis.

      Have you reported the other driver to the Police to allege that they have attempted to commit an act of fraud?

    • Should I? I had thought best to wait and see if the PI claims also collapsed before going to the Police. I don’t understand the process, but assumed that those claims would be made through a solicitor and not through the other driver’s insurer’s solicitor. How can a claim against my daughter succeed if the other driver had to drop her claim once the witness evidence was produced?

      • The claim against your daughter should be fought by her insurers. Make sure that they are taking in to account the fraudulent actions of the 3rd party. However, if your daughter was responsible for or partially responsible for the wing mirror clip, she could be held partly liable in any claim with the other driver having responsibility for their actions.

  49. In my case, the third party said in a telephone to me that they would pay for my car to be repaired. We still had to converse re any personal injury.

    However, the third party are now back tracking and wanting my insurers to say I won’t be filing a claim for personal injury compensation or they won’t be paying for the car damage. This person reversed in to me into me at a junction whilst driving an 18 tonne road line painter wagon.

    In my initial email to them, I said that I would be happy to discuss costs due to me but we hadn’t discussed personal injury at this time. Now they are holding me to ransom. I am now going through my insurers but they are disputing personal injury claim and are not acknowledging this. Help!

    • The situation you describe is a perfect example as to why it is so important to instruct a specialist Solicitor to deal with any claim for road traffic accident compensation and at Direct2Compensation, we have some of the best personal injury Solicitors around available to work for you. Our expert staff know your rights and can quickly obtain the initial information needed to hand your claim over to one of our specialist Solicitors who would then act for you and hold the relevant third party to account for their negligence that lead to your losses and injuries and seek to recover compensation for both for you.

      You should contact us today so that we can help take the stress out of this process for you and get the ball rolling in your favour.

  50. Hi i was in a accident where i recieved multiple injuries the other driver has accepted liabilty on my side but as my partner was driving the car btw is a right off the other driver is disputing his claim against my partner ?

    • As a passenger, there really should be any problem for you in terms of making a successful claim for car accident personal injury compensation as whoever was at fault, it will not be you – the passenger.

      Eventually, the liability will be attributed to either the 3rd party driver or to your partner. If the liability is placed with the 3rd party, you can claim compensation from their insurers. If it is found that your partner was at fault, you can still proceed with your claim against their insurance. You really need not worry as whoever is found to be at fault will already have a claim against them for the damage to the vehicles. Therefore, if you then add a personal injury claim on top of that, it won’t change anything in terms of insurance renewal or cost.

      We can help you with this claim, please call us on 01225430285.

  51. Had an injury in work spent three weeks in hospital. Fracctured back. Since then had a visit from the h.s.e. he madean report told me that he had found safety breaches at the site, told me to get a solicitor. Whats my chances of an injury claim ?

    • If someone from the HSE is telling you that you should instruct a Solicitor, it would appear that you have a valid claim for work accident compensation. We would love to help you with this serious matter. Please email your contact details to me by return and I will call you at the earliest opportunity. I’d only need a few minutes on the phone with you at the outset in order to be able to then identify the right specialist Solicitor with relevant experience to pursue this claim for you.

      Alternatively, you can call us on 01225430285

  52. Hi, I got injured at work while taking off hot ampules off the conveyor due to the wrong gloves I was given. An ampule got stuck in a guard smashed through the gloves into the index finger. I had to go the hospital for operation to remove a glass foreign body. I have not worked for three months. How much do you think my claim would be worthy?

    • It is not possible to place a value on your claim or tell you how much your claim could be worth without having seen medical evidence and read a medical experts report in to the extent of the injury and whether any long term damage (such as nerve damage) was caused to you.

      What we can say is that your claim valuation will increase if your scarring remains visible, if there is any nerve damage or loss of dexterity of the finger due to the scarring. At Direct2Compensation, our specialist Solicitors will ensure that your claim is settled at the maximum possible value and they will also ensure that any lost income and costs incurred by you as a result of your injury and enforced absence from work are recovered for you by way of the special damages element of your claim.

      If you would like us to start the claims process for you, please call us on 01225430285. Our expert staff are ready to help you.

  53. hi I slipped in a supermarket in may 2017. I was advised by the the store first aider that there was a pool of liquid by me which I had skidded on. There were no wet floor signs and I slipped by the pharmacy desk where there were 3 cctv cameras in operation. The staff on duty asked if I wanted the incident reporting to their incident line and they did this in my presence whilst I was awaiting the ambulance.
    I was taken to the AE department where I was diagnosed with a fractured elbow, likely fractured bone in my spine and severely sprained ankle, I spent 2 nights in hospital and I am still undergoing physiotherapy now.
    The supermarket have denied liability and in their words, they have provided the appropriate documentation to demonstrate that they have safe systems of work in place, however they state that they have no CCTV footage of the event.
    My solicitor has indicated that there may be no way of telling how long the liquid was on the floor. I have received the cleaning schedule from that day and there was only 1x housekeeper on to clean a superstore in conjunction with this on the incident report it states initially that they had retained the CCTV footage and then further down that they hadnt, giving no rationale for why they did or did not retain it. The incident report also states the area I fell in was not cleaned and the area I fell in is not made referance to on the cleaning schedule. I would be really grateful for any advise you could give me on this matter

    • You have certainly suffered some very nasty injuries in this accident and the severity of them proves that what can initially appear to be an innocuous accident can lead to very serious injuries in slipping accidents.

      The issue that is causing problems in your claim is a common one that affects many slipping accident compensation claimants in that the lack of a hazard sign being on display is not in and of itself enough to enable a claimant to succeed. Previously, the courts have been fairly lenient with the defendants in slipping accident compensation when it comes to a claimant having to prove that the spillage or item on the floor was there for a sufficiently long period of time that the defendant ought to have been able to notice it, place a sign out and arrange a clean up. It is for this reason that businesses such as supermarkets maintain a hand written log of cleaning inspections and housekeeping work. To summarised, the courts have basically said that as long as a business can demonstrate that it has an adequate cleaning regime and regular inspections of each area of their premises they will not be held liable if someone were to slip and fall. In essence, this is usually taken as the supermarket having to check each aisle of their store at least every 30 minutes. If they can provide a log that shows this, it is unlikely a claim will succeed against them. The courts have found that if a shopper were to drop an item and caused a spillage, it would be unreasonable to expect the store staff to notice, erect a hazard sign and begin clean up unless the item had been on the floor for more than 30 minutes. Of course, without CCTV, it is very hard to have the evidence to support your claim as it cannot be proven that the spillage was on the floor for 30 minutes or more.

  54. hi – while on a short break in a caravan – the steps of the caravan completely came away from the side of the caravan while i was stepping down them. injury occured to my leg and hand (still sore 5 months later) – contacted a well known solicitor who has only just told me they are not willing to take my case to court as caravan site can prove they had the relevant quarterly inspection records for the steps and that no other accidents like this have ever happened. bitterly disappointed as we have photos of corroded holes in caravan, photos of the stairs lying on the ground,, photos of my injuries.. just because they say the have inspected the stairs and they couldnt have forseen this happening im left with nothing but memories of a ruined holiday and a sore leg. fair?

    • Karyn

      I can appreciate that the news your previous Solicitor has given you is disappointing and left you feeling somewhat let down. This is understandable, given that you have suffered a painful injury and also had a ruined holiday.

      The courts have taken a view that as long as a landowner carries out regular inspections and has an appropriate maintenance regime in place, that they can be absolved of liability should a hazard arise in the periods between inspections. The key thing here though is that the inspections MUST be adequate and that the maintenance regime must carry out adequate repair work.

      However, on the basis of you having photographic evidence of corroded holes on the caravan it may be that your Solicitor could argue that their inspection regime was inadequate in that the corrosion would not have developed in a 3 month period. Indeed, an argument here would be that the inspection carried out previously should have noted signs of corrosion if it were an adequate and thorough inspection. This would have have lead to maintenance work being carried out that would have avoided your accident and injury.

      Whilst we cannot guarantee that we could re-open the claim and succeed, we would certainly be able to have one of our partner solicitors obtain the file of papers from your previous solicitor to review them and then discuss with you as to whether or not they feel that there is a sound argument to be made about the inspection regime being inadequate.

      I hope that this helps.

      Yours sincerely


  55. Hi,

    My partner suffered a back injury at work during a compulsory training exercise he had to do. He had to rely on two other female trainees to keep him help up during a grappling exercise

    Unfortunately they couldn’t hold his weight and he was dropped on the mat and badly hurt his back (he has an existing back problem which was declared on initial employment with the company and before the training exercise itself)

    He was in unbearable pain and was shaking and was nauseas. An ambulance was rung and he was taken to local community hospital.

    This put him out of work for some time, he has been appointed a solicitor through the union he was with at the time and they have since said that the third party insurer are not accepting any liability…

    Please can you advise based on the information if you think there is reasonable prospects, Im not sure he is getting the support and help from the solicitors dealing


    • Angelina

      Hi, we are currently helping a few claimants with claims following injuries sustained in exactly the same scenario. Whilst their claims have not yet succeeded, they are progressing well and we our partner solicitors advise that they are confident of succeeding with these matters.

      On the basis of your description, the employer would have appeared to have been negligent in failing to note your Husband’s disclosed back injury problem and for not adequately risk assessing the mandatory training with regards to his known medical history.

      If the claim being made via the union solicitor is not progressing well, we would be more than happy to have one of our specialist solicitors review the file and if they felt that it were practical, they would be able to take over the running of the claim for your husband.

      If you need our assistance further, please call us on 01225430285.


      Ian Morris

Direct2Compensation Personal Injury Claims

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