When is a third party liable in a car accident claim for compensation for driver and passenger airbag burns and whiplash due to a collision at a set of traffic lights in Birmingham
Car accident victim question
A third party vehicle turned right across a junction through a red light causing my car to collide with the near side of the third party vehicle.
I was driving with my son as a front seat passenger – he is 16 years of age. Both of us suffered airbag burns and whiplash injuries which are ongoing.
I have contacted the other driver’s insurance company and have been offered to settle the claim on a 50 / 50 basis. ShouldI accept this offer and what are the consequences if I do?
Road traffic accident solicitor response
You should not accept the offer to settle your claim and of that of your son on a 50 / 50 basis. By so doing you are accepting that the accident was as much your fault as that of the the third party driver.
It seems from your descriptions that full liability should attach to the other driver who clearly ran a red light.
You should contact a specialist RTA solicitor as soon as possible to look after your interests – the legal costs can be charged to the driver at fault in addition to your compensation for the airbag burns and whiplash injuries.
If you were to accept a 50 / 50 settlement – each party would have to pay 50 % of the other’s injuries and losses and the full legal costs of the other party’s solicitors.
The motor insurers would need to be involved to authorise this as it would be the insurance companies’ liability subject to any excess.
In addition – as your son is under 18 years you would act as the litigation friend in his claim providing instructions on his behalf. Any agreement to settle his claim would have to be authorised by the court in what is known asa minor settlement hearing.
The court would be very unlikely to authorise a settlement on a 50 / 50 basis as this is not in your son’s interest. In addition in a 50 / 50 settlement you would be accepting fault so your son would have a claim against you and the other driver as he should recover 100% compensation as an innocent car passenger.
If this was to be the case – there would be a conflict of interest as you cannot provide instructions on behalf of someone who hasa right to claim compensation against you.
To see how much compensation you can claim in Birmingham for whiplash and other injuries click compensation amounts