Articles about solicitors and legal services

Injury victims subjected to ‘shameful pressure’ from insurers

Insurance companies are being accused of pressurising accident victims into accepting reduced compensation awards before they get independent legal advice from their own solicitor.

The Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL) says insurers can approach victims within days of the accident when they are often confused and vulnerable.

The high pressure tactics have become so widespread that APIL has sent a dossier to the Financial Services Authority highlighting several cases where insurers have tried to settle claims at far below their true value.

Muiris Lyons, the president of APIL, said: "We have heard about quite shameful pressure to settle being brought to bear on vulnerable and injured people.

"The insurance industry is now euphemistically calling this ‘third party assistance’, but what many people won’t realise or remember, often because they are shocked and vulnerable at the time, is that insurers’ primary duty is to their shareholders, not the injured person.

"This obviously puts them in direct conflict with the victim."

One of the main problems is that most people know little about the compensation system and so are unable to assess whether a settlement offer from an insurance company is fair and reasonable.

That is why it is essential that anyone injured in an accident through no fault of their own should seek advice from a solicitor who specialises in personal injury claims.

That way they can be sure that they will be properly compensated. They should not have to pay for this independent legal advice as the solicitor’s fee can be recovered from the other party and their insurers.

Please contact us if you would like more information about making a personal injury claim.

If you wish to make an appointment, or ask us a question please contact us.