Keep up to date with Salmons Solicitors using our news section for the latest information.
Delaney v Secretary of State for Transport
There are estimated to be about 1.4 million uninsured cars in Britain and when an insured motorist driving carefully is in collision with a careless uninsured motorist it can be a real headache recovering compensation for injury and vehicle repairs.
For many years, at the behest of Europe, member states have been required to have in place a scheme to compensate the victims of uninsured motorists. In Engand and Wales there are two such schemes; The Uninsured Drivers Agreement 1999 covering the identified but uninsured motorist and another scheme covering the untraced motorist.
This article concerns the former scheme. Both schemes are administered by the Motor Insurers Bureau (the MIB) which is a fund paid into by motor insurers.
The 1999 agreement was abhorrent in that it contains a significant number of traps for the unwary but also a number of exclusions of liability whereby the MIB could escape from having to pay compensation.
This is relevant both where there is simply a car on a road without any insurance at all where its driver is then involved in an accident which he causes and also where a motorist takes out a policy after he has made false statements to his insurer and he then causes an accident.
In the former circumstances it is a straight claim on the MIB scheme but in the latter circumstances, the insurer who issued the policy will still have to deal with the claim but can do so then as an agent of the MIB. In other words it can take advantage of the get - outs and escape tunnels in the MIB Uninsured Drivers Agreement which arguably has more holes in it than a sieve.
The facts of the case were that Mr Delaney and Mr Pickett were travelling at high speed in a borrowed sports car driven by Mr Pickett. It was insured by its owner who made no reference to the fact that Pickett would be driving it when he took out the policy. The car was involved in an accident. When the emergency services attended, a large amount of drugs were found on the the men, that is, a large bag of cannabis stuffed into Delaney's jacket and a smaller amount was stuffed into Pickett's sock.
Picket was sent down for dangerous driving and possession of drugs.
Delaney sued Pickett and the insuers for his injuries. The insurers claimed that when the policy was taken out they were not made aware Pickett's long-standing drug habit and should have been told of his addiction.They were thus able to avoid the policy and deal with the claim as agents of the MIB under the MIB agreement.
They argued that the vehicle was being used to deal in drugs and this was criminal activity and thus clause 6(1) (e) (iii) of the MIB scheme applied. ( This clause excluded liability of the MIB where the vehicle which caused the accident was being used for criminal purposes). The court agreed and Delaney lost.
Delaney appealed and lost again.
He tried a third time, this time bringing proceedings against the Secretary of State for Transport for failing to properly implement European Motor Vehicle Insurance Directive. The relevant European Directive only allowed one exception - that of an injured passenger who knew the vehicle was uninsured at the time.
The Court held that the Government was liable to pay taxpayers funds to Delanay for setting up a scheme which tried to bring in unlawful exclusions of liability.
It cannot be said that the Government would have been ignorant of their limited scope for excluding liability so in collusion with the insurance industry they must have taken the decided to refuse to fully implement the relevant European Motor Vehicle Insurance Directive thus making the Government liable to pay compensation.
Latest News Articles
Has the tide has finally turned in social services failure to remove cases? Read More
Stephen Brookes, Assessor of the Personal Injury Panel of the Law Society, looks at the recent decision in Crawley v Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council Read More
The long running saga concerning the entitlement of an estranged adult child cut out of a deceased's parent's will is finally resolved, writes Donna Riley of Salmons Solicitors. Read More
The Government is still deluding itself in thinking that denial of access to justice will cause insurance premiums to fall. Read the full report here - Read More
Latest Government attempts to deny access to the courts are responded to by the Solicitors' profession. Read More
Association of Personal Injury Lawyers calls for a complete ban on nuisance calls about accident claims
APIL have issued recently a press release to try and persuade the Government to put an outright ban on intimidating cold callers pestering members of the public to make accident claims for accidents which they have never had. Read More
The Government's plans to prevent irritating claims being brought against their friends in the insurance industry continue to attract criticism. Read More
Stephen Brookes looks at two personal injury cases on either side of the fence; in the former case the claimant won but in the latter case the claimant failed. Read More
If ever there was a minefield in the application of applicable rules it is in the area of discrimination law. Stephen Brookes reviews the recent case of Griffiths v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions ( 2015) Read More
A recent case on the duty of swimming pool lifeguards confirms 1999 guidance Read More
Supreme Court decision changes the meaning of an unlawful penalty charge in contract law - Beavis v Parking Eye reviewed Read More
Working time might now include travel to and from the first and the last job for employees who are based at home. Read More
Following the decision of Salmons Solicitors to withdraw from all legal aid work upon the grounds of unsustainable remuneration levels, there is increasing pressure for criminal defence legal practices. Read More
Stephen Brookes reviews two recent personal injury claims where the claimants both failed. Read More
There can be few more fun pursuits than taking your off roader into difficult and challenging off road terrain, but before you do so, a cautionary word about a recent change of insurance law, writes Stephen Brookes. Read More
Stephen Brookes reviews the recent case of Bear Scotland Ltd v Fulton on the inclusion of overtime into holiday pay calculations. Read More
Stephen Brookes reviews the decision of the Supreme Court in Coventry and Lawrence (2014) Read More
High Court Judge rules Government's Motor Insurers Compensation Scheme for uninsured drivers unlawful. The case is reviewed by our personal injury specialist Stephen Brookes Read More
Stephen Brookes reviews two recent cases dealing with the question of when an employer can be liable for injuries inflicted by a member of the workforce on another person Read More
Farah Gilani reviews a January 2014 case involving a prosecution over an unguarded piece of machinery. Read More
Stephen Brookes reviews a recent case involving an injury compensation claim brought by one friend against another arising out of the use of loaned leisure equipment. Read More