You and the Law – 21st July 2009

Struck by an  uninsured driver

My daughter and I were injured in a road accident, but it turned out that the driver’s MOT had run out and so her insurance is void.  What will our position be? LS

If the driver has a valid certificate of insurance it’s possible that the insurance company will not entertain a claim from her because of the lack of an MOT.  But it will almost certainly have to pay out to third parties such as yourselves. 

If there is no policy at all, a scheme run by the Motor Insurers Bureau may meet your claim.  It’s a disaster for the driver, since the insurance company may be able to claim back from her any money it has to pay out to you. 

You should see a solicitor specialising in personal injury claims urgently, since these cases can be complicated and you need to ascertain how much compensation you might be entitled to.

Sins of the father

My father used to beat me before I left home.  I haven’t seen him for six years.  He has now discovered I’ve had a baby and has called round twice. On both occasions my husband refused to let him in. 

Now he’s threatening to apply for access, which he says will give him the right to have my child for overnight stays at his house.  I don’t want my son to have anything to do with him.  Will he get this access? MA

It’s called contact these days, which suggests your father hasn’t seen a solicitor and is just trying to intimidate you.  He could certainly apply for a contact order, but the courts are less concerned with the wishes of parents and grandparents than with the welfare of the child in question.

Unless he could give very good reasons why such contact would be in the interests of your son (which would be difficult to do since they’ve never
met) I think it’s unlikely your father would be successful.

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