Three people who were injured in a road accident while travelling in a car with an uninsured driver have won the right to claim compensation.
The three passengers suffered serious injuries and claimed compensation from the driver who was at fault for the accident. As he had no insurance and no means of paying, the claims were passed on to the Motor Insurers’ Bureau (MIB), which can compensate victims in cases like this.
However, the MIB said it was not liable because the passengers knew the driver and therefore knew, or should have known, that he had no insurance. It claimed the passengers turned a “blind eye” to the fact that the driver had previous driving disqualifications.
The judge concluded that he had not been given a full or truthful account of the accident, or the underlying relationship of the people involved. He determined that the passengers ought to have known that the vehicle was being driven without insurance because they knew more than enough to arouse suspicions yet didn’t ask any questions.
However, the High Court has overturned that decision.
It held that on the basis of the evidence recorded, there was no reason for any inference that the passengers had information that the driver had been to prison for driving or other offences or that he might not have been insured.
There had been a procedural shortcoming in the trial which meant that it would be unjust to allow the finding to stand and the matter would be remitted to the county court for rehearing.
Please contact us if you would like advice about making a personal injury claim.