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Accident victims sometimes ‘pressurised into settling’ by insurers

Victims of road accidents are sometimes subjected to high pressure tactics by insurance companies to make them settle for reduced levels of compensation, according to the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL).

APIL president Amanda Stevens highlighted one case where a woman was offered £1,000 immediately after being injured in an accident if she would settle there and then without consulting a lawyer.

When she declined, the offer was increased to £1,700 but she still refused. She then consulted a solicitor who made a proper assessment of her case. As a result, the woman later received ten times the amount she was first offered by the insurance company.

As Ms Stevens points out, these are not isolated incidents but everyday occurrences throughout the country. She said accident victims are being let down by "weak financial regulation of certain insurance activities" and accused the Financial Services Authority of turning a blind eye to their plight.

Anyone who has been injured as a result of someone else’s negligence is entitled to claim compensation. Insurers rarely offer the full value of the claim at the outset so if you are injured, it is vital to consult a solicitor to ensure your claim is handled correctly and you get the full level of compensation to which you are entitled.

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