Motorcyclist hits car in front

Often rear end shunts are thought to be open and shut cases, with the person behind always being responsible for the collision. However, this isn’t always the case in law, and it is important that each collision is considered carefully based on its own unique circumstances.
For Michael, a motorcyclist involved in a collision with the rear of a car in January 2022, he was unclear whether he could make a claim. When we asked more about the incident, it became clear that this was not a simple ‘rear end shunt’. Michael had been out with his friends and they had all gone to KFC to pick up a meal with a plan to eat it together at Drumpellier Park. His friend was driving a Suzuki Swift car and was carrying their food. As Michael didn’t know the route, they were travelling in convoy with his friend in the car leading the way. 
As they drove to the park, suddenly, and for no obvious reason, Michael’s friend emergency braked bringing the Suzuki Swift to a dead stop in the road. At the scene of the incident, his friend told the police that he had missed his turning into the park and had executed an emergency stop. This was despite knowing he had his friend on a motorcycle following him in convoy, and there was no emergency. 
Michael braked and tried to swerve but was unable to avoid colliding with the rear of the car. He sustained a fractured wrist and hand. Michael had been due to start a new job on the Monday following the accident but was unable to do so because of his injuries and his job offer was rescinded. 
We intimated the claim to the driver’s insurers who denied responsibility on the basis their driver had simply indicated and slowed for the turn as normal and Michael had collided with the rear of the car because he’d not left enough space. This was entirely at odds with what the driver had told police at the scene. We had even obtained and disclosed a statement from the reporting Police Officer confirming that the driver had admitted responsibility at the scene because he had slammed on the brakes. Accordingly, we had no choice but to raise a court action at the All Scotland Personal Injury Court.
This was a difficult time for Michael who had not wished to be in dispute with a close friend of his. However, due to the extent of his injuries, he had no option but to seek compensation from his friend’s motor insurers.  It was upsetting for Michael that his friend would not accept responsibility for his mistake, and instead forced Michael down a lengthy court procedure to obtain the reparation he deserved for his injuries and losses. It was only after a Court Action had been raised that a substantial offer in settlement was made and accepted by Michael bringing to and end what has been a tough 18 months. 
We often tell clients that the truth will always come out in litigation, and that’s as much a warning as a reassurance. We do see it happen time and time again. We were glad to be able to stand behind Michael and obtain justice for what happened to him.
Michael was really grateful for our support saying: “5* Thank you so much for all your help.”


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