Road Traffic Accident Compensation – Problems With Your Solicitor: What can I do if I am having problems with my solicitor who is making my UK road traffic accident claim?
What to do if I am having problems with my road traffic accident solicitor: I had a car accident earlier this year when I was hit by another vehicle. My car was written off and I suffered whiplash. I received a call from the insurers of the other driver offering a hire car and admitting that their insured driver was at fault.
I am insured third party, but I have the benefit of legal protection cover so I instructed a lawyer under this policy to recover compensation for me.
As liability was accepted by the other driver I expected my claim to be straight forward, but I have found that my legal representative will not answer my calls or letters.
I received a letter a couple of months ago explaining that there was a problem and we will need to take the matter to court. I have heard nothing further despite repeated requests for information and I feel in the dark as to what is going on.
I am very frustrated and would appreciate any guidance you can give as to what I can do in this situation.
When you claim on your legal protection cover of your motor insurance policy you do not have the choice of the solicitor you can use to make your claim.
You will be automatically passed to a firm of solicitors who have an agreement with your insurer – these are known as insurance panel solicitors.
Although your claim should be supervised by a qualified solicitor – the day to day running of your claim may be by a caseworker whom is not a qualified solicitor or is very inexperienced. This can lead to the problems you are describing – as soon as an unusual situation arises the caseworker may not be experienced enough to know how to deal with it so will give your claim a low priority.
What can you do if you have a problem with how your solicitor is handling your road traffic accident claim?
You will be pleased to know that there are a number of options available to you if you are unhappy with how your solicitor is dealing with your claim, including:
1. Use your legal firm’s internal complaints procedure
When you were first contacted by the law firm to run your claim you will have been provided with a letter setting out amongst other things the firm’s complaints procedure. All legal firms must do this – you will be given a name of a senior solicitor to contact and the process for complaints will be set out.
Once a partner in the firm looks into your problems it is likely the lawyer will get things moving much quicker or alternatively another caseworker will be assigned.
2. Complain about your road traffic accident solicitor to your insurance company
Your insurance company will have a big influence on the legal firm it instructs under your legal protection policy – after all the insurer is supplying the legal firm with its source of work.
3. Complain to the Law Society about your RTA lawyer
If you have followed the firm’s complaint procedure and are still not happy – you should complain to the Law Society. The Law Society monitors legal professionals in the UK and requires a high level of client care to be achieved. The Law Society can fine solicitors who are found not to be showing sufficient client care.
4. Change solicitors
As a last resort you have the right to change solicitors to run your claim. The issue you may find relates to costs and the time spent by the existing firm on your claim.
The new legal firm will not be funded by your insurer, but you still may not have to pay any of your legal costs by using, for example, a “no win no fee” agreement.
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