I have a Suzuki Bandit 600 worth about £1500. All was well until some fella side swiped me.
Whilst I paid extra to be fully comprehensive insured, my insurer told me not to claim off my policy and get my bike paid by the other side’s insurer. They then transferred me to a bike hire/repair company who said I wouldn’t have to pay anything.
I signed their paperwork, they took my Bandit away and gave me a hire bike (even though I have a van). However, the other side is now disputing liability and the bike hire/repair company say I owe £4,500 for storage and hire charges, my bike will not be repaired until liability is admitted and I must go to Court if I don’t pay their bill. Am I really personally liable?
You could have claimed off your policy if your insurer hadn’t palmed you off. Let’s not forget you actually paid them to cover your liability.
I’d need to see the paperwork you signed with the hire/repair company, but I suspect you’re liable for the £4,500 and may have no option but to issue Court proceedings against the other side, although a Judge is unlikely to accept the other side should pay £4,500 when your Bandit was only worth £1,500.
A Judge may also find you ‘failed to mitigate’ your loss as you had a van. My advice is only hire a bike if you need one and you can afford to pay it if the other side is not liable.
Andrew ‘Chef’ Prendergast
More Bikes February 2020
Posted by . Last modified: December 14, 2020 at 9:31 am
Andrew has been riding motorcycles since he was 10 years old and currently rides a ZZR1400 as his daily commuter whether it is sunny or snowing. In addition, he is currently restoring an old Honda CB750 K1. Andrew practices across all areas of motorcycle law, with his practice involving both civil claims and motoring defence work.
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The MB legal column is compiled by managing partner Andrew 'Chef' Prendergast and his bike-riding barristers and solicitors at White Dalton Motorcycle Solicitors.
The firm deals with personal injury claims and its sister company, Motor Defence Solicitors, deals with all the motoring offences.
White Dalton lawyers have a vast knowledge of bike law, and they have full bike licences, too. They don’t act for insurance companies or the prosecution. White Dalton is Britain’s premier specialist motorcycle law practice, and if its professionals don’t know the answer to your question, there probably isn’t one. Don’t rely on the advice from your insuranceappointed solicitor, get proper independent advice.
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