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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 30929
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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Good morning I was hit by another vehicle whilst reversing

Customer Question

Good morning

I was hit by another vehicle whilst reversing into my parking space. The other party admitted fault verbally and in a written statement. His insurers are now stating that I was 100 pecent at fault and claim abrogated rights to act on their clients behalf. My insurers state that the written report from the other party would not stand legally as it may have been made under duress.

I was not at fault and was taking due care and attention whilst reversing. I had completed around 75 percent of the manouever to my space which involved reversing approximately 40 yards. The other party reversed out of his space after I had started passing him and caused damage from about mid-way along the rear passenger door extending to the front wing. The other party stated at the time of the accident that he had not seen me before he started his manouever.

Tony Gemmell
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
Hi.

Thank you for your question. My name is XXXXX XXXXX I will try to help with this.

In order to give you an answer tailored to your circumstances, I will just need to ask you some preliminary questions so that I can consider your position from all angles.

Where were you attempting to park please?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Jo C,


Yes I was reversing toward my parking space at the time. I had completed around thirty metres of the journey and was approximately 12 metres from my parking space when I was hit.


 


I have pasted a copy of the accident report to my insurers below.


 


XXXXX/p>

Wellington


Somerset


TA21 9AU


 


 


 


 


 


 


20th August 2013


 


 


 


 


 


 


Dear Sir or Madam,


 


 


Accident involving Rover 45 Reg no WH04 EWT and Vauxhall Tigra Reg no


L22 ANY on 19th August 2013 at Ladysmith House Taunton TA1 4DP.


Claim reference number XXXXXXXXX /strong>



 


 


I have lodged a claim with reference the above incident. I was initially advised during my first call to Direct Line that a 50/50 settlement would be usual in this case. I advised that I was in no way responsible for the accident and that I took due care and attention whilst reversing my vehicle into my parking space as this is an area which residents frequently use as an access and egress route to and from the building. I further advised that the Vauxhall Tigra was reversed into my vehicle as I was passing that vehicle. The damage to my vehicle starts at about midway along the rear passenger door and continues in severity to the front wing which would signify that the undamaged rear portion of the car had actually passed the Vauxhall before the impact and that Mr Jasevicius did not move his vehicle until the rear of my vehicle had started passing his vehicle. The speed of Mr Jasevicius’s vehicle whilst reversing from his space is unknown. I estimate my speed to be around walking speed or thereabouts.


 


Immediately following the incident the owner of the Vauxhall Tigra admitted that he hadn’t seen me when he reversed out of his space due to another vehicle beside him obscuring his view. At the point of impact I had completed approximately 3/4 of the journey to my parking space. In terms of distance I had travelled around 30 metres in reverse on the access road prior to the impact and was only some 12 metres from my parking space when the impact occurred.


 


Following the incident I contacted your claims department as soon as I had Direct Line’s contact details, to advise of the incident.


 


I spoke with the driver of the other vehicle Mr Vidmantus Jasevicius this morning, Tuesday 20th August 2013 and asked if he had called his Insurance Company to advise of the incident. Mr Jasevicius informed me he had. According to Mr Jasevicius he advised his insurers that he had not seen me when he reversed into me. He informed me that the insurers stated they would seek a bump for bump with regard the incident. As Mr Jasevicius is Lithuanian and his English is sometimes broken I took this to mean a knock for knock. I asked Mr Jasevicius if he felt I was in any way responsible for the incident to which he replied no. He stated that he tried to advise his insurers that he felt he was responsible but they continued to state bump for bump.


 


I asked Mr Jasevicius if he would mind writing down for me his version of the incident and he stated he would do this.


 


Around 3 hours later Mr Jasevicius came to see me and handed me the letter which he had written and signed.


 


 


The letter states:


 


This morning in a private parking site, by Ladysmith House, at 7.20AM two cars Vauxhall Tigra Reg. No. L22 ANY and Rover Reg. No. WH04 EWT have been involved into a car accident. When you started reversing your car Rover it was about 20 yards away from my car Vauxhall. I did not see your car reversing as there was another car parked besides me. When your car was just behind mine I switched the reverse gear and pulled my Vauxhall Tigra back what it hit your Rover. In this situation it seems my fault is more than yours as I did not give you time to complete your reversing.”



I have submitted a copy of this statement for your perusal.



Since the incident I have placed my vehicle in the space owned by Mr Jasevicius to determine roughly what his field of view would have been. The vehicle that obstructed Mr Jasevicius’s view has not been moved since the incident, therefore the obstruction would be similar to that encountered by Mr Jasevicius . A conservative estimate of the distance from which I would have been visible is 10-11 metres away from the impact zone. I understand that the rearview mirror and wing mirrors in my car may differ from those on Mr Jasevicius’s car, however, my vehicle would definitely have been visible in Mr Jasevicius’s path prior to the impact. I have timed how long it takes me to reverse along the access road to my parking space and it takes approximately 25 seconds. The access road is approximately 42 metres. This would mean that I reverse at approximately 1.68- metres per second. At this speed I would have been evident in Mr Jasevicius’s mirrors for approximately 5.9 seconds.


 


I have submitted a plan of the area where the incident took place detailing my approach to the area and the location of other vehicles parked on the property at the time of the accident.



 


In speaking to your claims department this afternoon Tuesday 20th August I was informed that the Mr Jasevicius’s insurers had lodged a 50/50 decision. This is totally unacceptable to me as I was in no way responsible for the accident. I was told by the gentleman I spoke with that the admission by Mr Jasevicius would not be taken as an admission by his insurers who were acting on his behalf, and it would be likely that a 50/50 decree would stand. According to this gentleman an admission of culpability is not viewed as an admission in civil law. I worked in the criminal justice system for 18 years and my partner works with a local law firm, it is the first time either of us has encountered an admission being viewed as anything other than an admission.


 


Since that call I have sought counsel from a civil litigation solicitor who assures me that the written and signed admission of liability from Mr Jasevicius would be sufficient to see the claim settled in my favour through a small claims Court.


 


I would be obliged if you could confirm at this point whether my policy covers legal expenses should I find it necessary to bring action against Mr Jasevicius’s insurers.


 


Yours sincerely


 


 


 


 


Mr Anthony Gemmell


Policy number 46094277

Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
Are you asking if you are liable?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


"For Jo C"


 


Sorry about the lateness of my response but Company restrictions deny access to some websites.


 


In response to your question: Yes I would like to know if I am liable and would like to know if the other parties insurers can disregard what I see as an admission of liability when the other party stated in writing:


 


"I did not see your car reversing as there was another car parked besides me. When your car was just behind mine I switched the reverse gear and pulled my Vauxhall Tigra back what it hit your Rover. In this situation it seems my fault is more than yours as I did not give you time to complete your reversing.”

Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.

Its no problem.

 

I'm sorry but I still don't understand how this accident happened. What actually happened at scene? I understand you were reversing but how did that bring you into contact with another vehicle?

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