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Title: Interim payment needed!

Date: 18 April 2016

Question

I had pretty bad injuries in May 2014 when I was side swiped by a car. I am still not at work (I am an electrician by trade) as I still need further surgery. I have required a great deal of care which my wife has provided. I have also spent a lot of money on physio and gym equipment to try and get back to my former self. The car driver’s insurer admitted that the accident was his fault but their solicitors are refusing to give me enough money to get by. I have no more savings and am at a loss as to how I am neat to survive without an income. They have only paid me £5,000 so far in addition to paying for my written-off Ducati. What can I do as my family is suffering?

Chris Long, Bath

Answer

The good news is that liability has been admitted. The bad news is that the solicitors acting for the insurer are either being mean or your solicitor is not requesting adequate interim payments with required evidence. An interim payment is a “payment on account” of your compensation claim to tide you over until such time as you are compensated in full. I don’t know what you were earning before the accident but the average electrician gets paid about £25,000 to £30,000 per year.

Assuming you have medical evidence linking the accident to the inability to work and evidence that you were likely to have continued to earn had the accident not happened and you can prove a history of pre-accident earnings then there is no good reason why you cannot force the insurer to pay you your lost income to date (as well as other financial losses such as for care).

£5,000 sounds hopelessly low so I suggest you speak to your solicitor and ask him to threaten a court application for a significant interim payment in the absence of the insurer paying up within 14 days.

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