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Jamie-Law, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 6753
Experience:  Solicitor
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About a week ago I was driving down the highstreet of my

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About a week ago I was driving down the highstreet of my village during rush hour. I was driving up the road when the traffic came to a halt. To my left there was a large Co Op lorry. The lorry was positioned so that the back of it was in line with my rear passenger door. The lorry was parked with half of the vehicle's wheels on the pavement and half on the road obstructing about half of the lane. As I was stopped I saw a truck approaching from the opposite side of the road. In order to allow the truck to pass I pulled in behind the Co Op van not realising that it's tail lift was down and hanging out about 5 inches beyond the width of the truck and about a meter beyond the length. From my position in the drivers seat I had no way of seeing the tail lift as it was at the height of my rear wheel arch and therefore not visible using the mirrors or windows. As I pulled in behind the lorry the flap of the tail lift made contact with my rear passenger side and has left a scratch around 40-50cm long. There was nothing to indicate that the tail lift was there and no lights or reflective signs on the tail lift.
I want to argue that the Co Op are liable for the damage as they were parked illegally at the time, obstructing the road and I had no way of seeing the tail lift. I have CCTV of the incident. Co Op are denying liability as they say the vehicle was stationary and it was therefore my responsibility to be aware of the space around me.
Please could you let me know whether I have a reasonable chance in arguing this? I am a trainee solicitor (although clearly not in this area!) so if you could also point me to the relevant law it would be appreciated as I am struggling to find any specific guidance on this.

Hello my name is ***** ***** I will help you with this?

How much are you seeking to claim please?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I expect the damage to be in the region of £300-£400.

You need to write and set out your losses and request a refund within 14 days or say you will go to Court within 14 days. You should make sure you send this signed delivery and keep a copy.

If they do not refund you then you can issue proceedings in the County Court. You can either do this online at: or by completing form N1 and take it to your local County Court.

The Court will then issue a claim which a copy will be sent to the Defendant who will have a limited time to defend it, if not you can enter Judgment and enforce.

If the claim is for £10,000 or less it will be a small claim so you will not need legal representation. Over this value you would need representation for trial.

Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your response but as I said I am a trainee solicitor so I don't need information on how to bring a claim to court. I am looking for advice on the law on this. I don't want to make a claim if I'm going to lose. I have tried to research myself but can't find any relevant law.

it comes under negligence. Did they owe a duty of care, was it breached and did you suffer a loss.

The answer is yes. It's under the law of negligence.

Does that help?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Again, I have studied tort. I know what law it comes under. I need to know whether they breached their duty by parking in the way they did. It's obviously very specific circumstances and I get the impression that you don't have the information I need about this specific situation so shall we just leave it and I'll go back to researching? But thank you very much for your time.

yes they do. They owe a duty of care. Even more so when the vehicle is parked half in the pavement and on the road.

If you read the Highway Code then that if the best source.

Rule 242

You MUST NOT leave your vehicle or trailer in a dangerous position or where it causes any unnecessary obstruction of the road.

Rule 244

You MUST NOT park partially or wholly on the pavement in London, and should not do so elsewhere unless signs permit it. Parking on the pavement can obstruct and seriously inconvenience pedestrians, people in wheelchairs or with visual impairments and people with prams or pushchairs.

Rule 246

Goods vehicles. Vehicles with a maximum laden weight of over 7.5 tonnes (including any trailer) MUST NOT be parked on a verge, pavement or any land situated between carriageways, without police permission. The only exception is when parking is essential for loading and unloading, in which case the vehicle MUST NOT be left unattended.

Does that clairfy?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thanks, ***** ***** also what I found in the Highway Code but i was looking for a more specific response in terms of who was at fault. I don't want to start a claim that has no chance of succeeding. I realise that the lorry should not have been parked where it was but are the Co Op correct in saying that it was my responsibility to avoid their tail lift as they were stationary? Are there laws which apply to stationary objects in the road?

Not specifically no. Its just whether or not they (and you) were acting reasonably.

The decision will vary from Judge to Judge. if it is contested. They may just take a commercial view and if you issue pay the claim out as it could cost more to defend.

But there are no specific laws on which you are relying on - it is all going to come down to what a Judge thinks on the day. This is very common with most road traffic accident claims.

Can I clarify anything for you?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Ok, that was more the answer I was looking for although doesn't really help the situation but that's not your fault. If I were to go through the small claims court is it a case of a one off payment or could I end up being really out of pocket if they decide to contest it?

no. If you lose then you only can't recover the court fees.

Does that clairfy?

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