Bianca Cameron (Claimant/Appellant) v Naveed Hussain (First Defendant) and Liverpool Victoria Insurance Co Ltd (Second Defendant/Respondent)
The claim arises from a road traffic accident on 26 May 2013. There was a collision between the claimant, Miss Bianca Cameron and another motorist, driving a Nissan Micra. The driver of the Nissan failed to stop but the registration number was noted by a witness. The Claimant suffered personal injuries and vehicle related losses including credit hire estimated at between £10,000 to £15,000.
The First Defendant was identified as the owner of the vehicle but failed to cooperate with the police to identify the driver. The Second Defendants were the motor insurers for the vehicle but it transpired the policy had been obtained fraudulently in a different name to the First Defendant.
It became clear the First Defendant was not the driver of the vehicle so the Claimant applied to substitute the First Defendant to an unknown person identified as:
‘The person unknown driving vehicle registration number Y598 SPS who collided with vehicle registration number KG03 ZIZ on 26 May 2013’.
The lower courts dismissed the application and the first appeal and the matter progressed to the Court of Appeal.
The Issues The main issues were whether the Claimant could sue and obtain judgment against an unknown person and whether an insurer would be liable under s151 RTA 1988 to satisfy any such judgment.
The Court of Appeal after consideration of the previous case law and CPR granted the Claimant’s appeal and permission to substitute the First Defendant to an unknown person.
- Claimants involved in accidents with unknown drivers, where the insurers are identified, are unlikely to pursue a claim under the MIB Untraced Driver’s Agreement and instead pursue court proceedings. Claims under the Untraced Driver’s Agreement have limited recoverability for damages and costs
- Insurers in such circumstances will have limited recourse to recover any monies paid out unless they are to pursue their own policyholder for breach of policy conditions
- Insurers will need to consider more carefully the need to obtain s152 declaration proceedings thus avoiding their s151 liability
- Where s152 declaration is not an option insurers will need to ensure they are added as party to any proceedings at the outset to enable submissions to be made
- Insurers will need to consider whether more detailed investigations/questions are required before putting policies in place
It remains to be seen whether LV will appeal to the Supreme Court.
For further information on this case please contact: Anthony Baker, Partner on T: 0344 245 4202 or E: email@example.com