Claims for injuries in public places
If you slip or fall in a shop, a pubic pavement or a road, you may be able to claim public liability compensation for any injuries suffered. As a claimant, you will need to show that the organisation that was responsible for your safety was at fault. The responsibility for a settlement might lie with a Local Authority or the owner of a shop.
How to claim against someone’s public liability insurance
You – the claimant – have to be able to demonstrate that an organisation or individual had liability for your injury – i.e. was at fault for what happened. The fact that you have been injured in an incident in a public space is probably not going to be in dispute. What might be disputed in law is whether or not the landowner was responsible for what happened due to negligence.
You have to be able to show evidence in law that the landowner was aware of the defect to support your experience that caused the injury was due tot heir negligence, namely that they did not take reasonable steps to prevent that from happening.
Many liablity claims are against local authorities for accidents like raised pavements or building works. The court’s view is that a Local Authority cannot reasonably be expected to make sure that every inch of pavement and roadway is in perfect condition at all times. That would be financially and practically impossible for a Local Authority to do. However, what the court does expect is that the Local Authority has a reasonable system of inspection and repair in place. If the Local Authority does not have the finances to make sure that roads are repaired, that is not your problem. If a defect on a pavement or a roadway has been left for too long when it should have been repaired by the Local Authority, then, depending on the size of the defect, the Local Authority is likely to be held responsible.
What information is needed for public liability claims?
It is important that you take photographs of the area that you fell or where you were injured as soon as possible after the incident has taken place. Ideally, photographs with a tape measure showing the length and depth of the hole/defect would help the insurance claim. If any of the people who live in the area are able to comment on how long the defect has been present, that would serve as evidence to strengthen your case too. If those people have notified the Local Authority either by a phone call or in writing, that also serves as very useful evidence in public liability insurance cases.
Public liability injury claim process
To start a public liability claim process for legal damages, our personal injury claims team will take all of the relevant details about the incident from you, then our injury lawyers contact the landowner to ask them for details of their insurance coverage. If the likely value of the legal damages claim is below £25,000, we then lodge notification of the liability insurance claim on an online portal. The insurers then have 20 working days to make investigations about the accident and respond. If the insurance company accepts liability for the accident, we will then make arrangements for you to be medically examined and a copy of the medical report will be submitted to the insurance company on the same online portal. At the same time as sending the medical report, we advise the insurers of how much public liability compensation we think you should be awarded. If the insurers respond with a fair offer, we will most likely advise you to accept. If the offer is unreasonable, we will ask the insurers to make an interim payment (for a figure which if their “best offer”) and then issue court proceedings to ask the court to assess the level of damages that should be awarded. If we do have to issue lawsuit proceedings, it is just a paper exercise and you do not need to attend at court.
What if liability is disputed?
If the insurer does not respond within 20 working days, the case drops out of the online portal system and the insurance company becomes entitled to a 3 -month period to investigate further the insurance claim.
If ultimately the insurer disputes that the landowner is liable for the accident, then as long as we are satisfied that you have a strong case, our liability lawyers will issue court proceedings against the landowner
Before lawsuit proceedings are issued, our solicitors have to be sure that you have the approval and coverage of your legal expense insurer. We do this to make sure our legal clients have coverage protection in cases from any potential costs that might be incurred from the lawsuit.
- Road Traffic Accident Claims
- Fatal injury compensation claims
- Amputation Compensation Claims
- Brain injury compensation claims
- Wrongful Arrest Compensation Claims
- Serious Injury Compensation Claims
- Housing disrepair compensation claims
- Pedestrian Accident Claims
- Accident At Work Claims
- Cosmetic Surgery Compensation Claims
- Motorcycle Accident Claims
- Bicycle Accident Compensation Claims
- Public Liability Claims
- Medical Negligence Claims
How can we help?
Contact our Accident Claim Solicitors