Compensation post cycle accident

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pedgepuk
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Compensation post cycle accident

Postby pedgepuk » 9 Dec 2018, 10:42am

Four years ago I was deliberately hit by a bus on my commute home following a request to the bus driver for his details after cutting me up. He refused and decided to use the double decker to run me into the middle of the road. Since I managed to get the reg details I decided to cycle along and overtook the bus which was stuck in traffic although it soon caught up and I was hit from behind and collided with another cyclist, suffered cuts, bruising, grazing, and was taken by the Police to hospital to get stitches. Bike was mangled as the bus drove over the rear wheel, and items of mine were damaged at the time. A witness then came forward who was a passenger on the bus, but the bus company didn't provide cctv as it was 'corrupted'. The bus company took 14mths to admit liability.

It's been a long process with delays from their insurers to provide an interim payment and to agree compensation. My solicitors (No win no fee) have also been a challenge and one of the factors in this now running into year 4, although movement has been made.

An initial offer was made for £4.5k but I was advised to decline which I did. No other offers came through so it went to trial but subsequently postponed and another offer provided of £7.5k on Part 36 which I'm now inclined to also decline based on my solicitors advice. The only concern I have is if I have to end up paying legal fees if the judge at trial decision is less.

According to the solicitors, the injuries alone are worth £7k, then there's interest, losses and travel expenses to work which are quite high.

Has anyone had experience of the Part 36 offer?

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gaz
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Re: Compensation post cycle accident

Postby gaz » 9 Dec 2018, 1:14pm

Sorry to hear of your case. I've no experience of a "Part 36 offer", a quick google found this, no knowledge of the law firm that has prepared those notes.

thirdcrank
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Re: Compensation post cycle accident

Postby thirdcrank » 9 Dec 2018, 1:23pm

I've only ever made one personal injury claim and there's an account here:

viewtopic.php?p=204550#p204550

AFAIK, the principle of having to meet the other side's costs if you lose or get a judgment smaller than the offer is longstanding, although the name may change from time to time. I think the foot dragging and bullying are all part of the tactics.

FWIW, I don't think other people's experience, including mine, is much help. I'd suggest the two biggies are your solicitor's professional advice and your own peace of mind. OTOH, There's no point in keeping a dog and barking yourself, but you are the one who who has to sleep at night.
====================================================================================

PS Part of the problem may be a perceived lack of certainty about the outcome. FWIW, I think that once liability is established, there's something of an established scale for personal injuries which factors in things like the extent of the injury and any resulting disability, when the age and earning power of the claimant will be relevant. I think it's much more of a lottery with something like defamation, as William Roache AKA Ken Barlow discovered.
In 1991, Roache won a libel action against The Sun, which had described him as boring and unpopular with his fellow Coronation Street stars. He was awarded £50,000 damages by the jury, the same amount that he had turned down in an out-of-court settlement offered by the newspaper before the case. As a result, he was liable for the £120,000 costs incurred. Roache sued his law firm for negligence in 1998, and was declared bankrupt in April 1999.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Roache

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The utility cyclist
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Re: Compensation post cycle accident

Postby The utility cyclist » 11 Dec 2018, 10:44pm

I got £1750 for a fractured elbow some 10 years ago no losses or other out of pocket expenses, bike was completely fine. Given what you've said I'd decline the offer.
My 2d worth.

althebike
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Re: Compensation post cycle accident

Postby althebike » 12 Dec 2018, 12:21pm

Here are some excerpts from my compensation case, there is a degree of confidentiality here so I will only include some explanatory bits.
Making a formal offer to the Defendant to settle your whole claim. You are allowed to do this under the court rules and this offer to settle is called a “Part 36 offer”.
I am advising you to make an offer because the court expects you to attempt to settle the claim and because there are considerable advantages to you in settling the case now, thereby avoiding the cost and risk of a trial
If the Defendant accepts the offer after 21 days then the court will decide who will pay costs but you will almost always receive from the Defendant your costs of the whole claim.
If the Defendant does not accept your offer then your case will proceed to trial unless we agree another amount with them. If at the trial the court awards you the amount of your offer or more, then the Defendant is likely to have to pay a penalty to you by way of:-
An additional amount in respect of your damages.
This amount will be 10% in respect of your damages up to £500,000 and 5% of any amount above that figure. The additional amount is capped at £75,000.
Additional interest on your legal costs and damages. The interest can be up to 10% above the Bank of England base rate .
If you are not awarded as much as this offer at the final trial, then there should be no direct consequences for either party as a result of this offer being made. However, we may be called upon to explain to the court why we thought that this offer was a reasonable amount to settle for.

Vorpal
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Re: Compensation post cycle accident

Postby Vorpal » 12 Dec 2018, 1:23pm

pedgepuk wrote:
Has anyone had experience of the Part 36 offer?

Sorry to hear about your trouble.

I honestly would ask the lawyer to explain it in layman's terms. They certainly have more experience with part 36 than anyone one here.
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Lance Dopestrong
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Re: Compensation post cycle accident

Postby Lance Dopestrong » 14 Dec 2018, 9:32am

Why did your legal rep not insist on receiving the supposedly corrupted CCTV so they could see if their appointed technical expert could correct it?
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Vorpal
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Re: Compensation post cycle accident

Postby Vorpal » 14 Dec 2018, 1:16pm

Lance Dopestrong wrote:Why did your legal rep not insist on receiving the supposedly corrupted CCTV so they could see if their appointed technical expert could correct it?

There are pretty strict limitations on sharing data from CCTV. The bus company may not be able to legally hand over the data to anyone except the police and their insurers. To do otherwise is likely to be a violation of privacy.

The rules for police handling of CCTV data changed this year. I'm not sure whether the police can share it, but I suspect that the OPs legal team could only apply to have it examined by an independent technical expert.
“In some ways, it is easier to be a dissident, for then one is without responsibility.”
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alexnharvey
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Re: Compensation post cycle accident

Postby alexnharvey » 15 Dec 2018, 3:54pm

I think CCTV can be disclosed to legal representatives as well as police and prosecution agencies. They'd have to disclose as evidence prior to trial. Further as the subject of the CCTV he has a right to see it via a subject access request unless it would interfere with the case .

https://ico.org.uk/media/1542/cctv-code-of-practice.pdf https://www.southtyneside.gov.uk/articl ... CTV-images

Maybe you could link to the new guidance that contradicts this?

You'd certainly think that the bus company should be able to provide evidence that it's really corrupted, if they can't it looks a bit like an attempt to pervert the course of justice by destroying or withholding evidence. It would also seem odd that the police did not secure the evidence.

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Re: Compensation post cycle accident

Postby Vorpal » 15 Dec 2018, 11:38pm

alexnharvey wrote:I think CCTV can be disclosed to legal representatives as well as police and prosecution agencies. They'd have to disclose as evidence prior to trial. Further as the subject of the CCTV he has a right to see it via a subject access request unless it would interfere with the case .

https://ico.org.uk/media/1542/cctv-code-of-practice.pdf https://www.southtyneside.gov.uk/articl ... CTV-images

Maybe you could link to the new guidance that contradicts this?

You'd certainly think that the bus company should be able to provide evidence that it's really corrupted, if they can't it looks a bit like an attempt to pervert the course of justice by destroying or withholding evidence. It would also seem odd that the police did not secure the evidence.

They have to disclose evidence. They don't have to hand it over.

As for the data being corrupted, this can easily be confirm by police or an independent third party. There is not, as far as I know, any specific guidance that says what they can do with CCTV data. And in fact the guidance does not say anything specific about the handling of data. Instead, it says that companies that use CCTV have to have poliicies that protect privacy. For a bus, that covers everything they record. And the bus company almost certainly has a policy in place which says that CCTV data will only be provided to law enforcement and insurance in case of an accident. GDPR means that an individual can request data showing themselves, however if other people are in it and cannot easily be obscured, the bus company can refuse on the basis that they have not given permission. A court can order that the data be released/disclosed.
“In some ways, it is easier to be a dissident, for then one is without responsibility.”
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Cours
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Re: Compensation post cycle accident

Postby Cours » 16 Dec 2018, 12:07am

I would hold out for as much as you can. My brother in. law got 14K for a smashed bike and a broken rib/cracked teeth/cuts and bruises. 4K of that was for 5 new capped teeth. Only two were cracked but the dentist ' decided' he would have to match the other three.

The insurers were livid! Also, you have to play them at their own game. They will try and cheat, lie, bribe and swindle you as long as they can. Never accept the first, or even the second offer.

He had a vintage italian bike which he hand built himself, probably put about 1500 into it. In the end they hat to cough up new for old, so he got about 6K just for the bike. I was the main witness when it happened. It was quite a heavy hit from behind but mercifully he ended up mostly in a hedge rather than the road.

As far as i remember the offers were 5.5k, 9.5k and then 14k in the end. And he was also awarded more money later as his teeth needed more work. If you can get a cycling specific solicitor, all the better.