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james bruce
james bruce, Solicitor-Advocate
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 7516
Experience:  Owner at James Bruce Solicitors
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I had a rental van burst into flames in the middle of the

Customer Question

Hi, I had a rental van burst into flames in the middle of the night. All my work gear and work tools were inside. The fire fighters said it was due to faulty wiring. But the rental company has not paid me anything yet. What can I do?
JA: Where are you? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: Liverpool Uk
JA: What steps have you taken so far?
Customer: Made a list of items burned in the fire ive had to file for an IVA to cover my work tools
JA: Is there anything else the Lawyer should know before I connect you? Rest assured that they'll be able to help you.
Customer: its taken a huge toll on me. My financial state spiraled and took about 3 years to recover. But I’m ready to take this to court now. I feel like I’ve been a victim of this.
Submitted: 10 days ago.
Category: Law
Customer: replied 10 days ago.
Also, the rental company is ***** *****. They said they are wait for ford to cover the cost before anything can be paid to me. Ford said this was arson. But ***** ***** and fire fighter both confirmed it was faulty wiring in the van. I don’t want to take this to court if theres a chance they’ll be able to pin the cost of the van on me. Everything I use for work was inside that van. I rented it while doing my own house and my kitchen tiles bathroom cabinets, and all of my tools, pipes, and all work gear was inside. I’m not even sure if I listed everything because I was so shocked to wake up to flames. My neighbors all saw it burn and woke me and my wife in the middle of the night. My neighbor called the firefighters before she ran to wake me up. There’s no way I did this. But I don’t want to sue such a huge company and lose because they can afford more lawyers than me. Any advice?
Expert:  james bruce replied 10 days ago.
Hello, I hope you are well. My name is***** am a solicitor advocate and  I will be assisting you with your question today. I am very sorry to hear of the problem you are experiencing and I will do my best to help you with this matter. 

It is possible that the claim would fail. There is case law regarding vehicles and fires. and when an insurance company is liable to pay out.

A court of appeal hearing that held the insurance company liable, was actually overturned on Appel to the Supreme Court, who said that a strict following of the Road traffic act should be followed, and that "we will cover you…if you have an accident in your vehicle or if there is an accident caused by or arising out of your use of your vehicle on a road or other public place" 

"It was further suggested that whether an accident has truly arisen out of the “use” of a vehicle will require an analysis of the “connection in time, place and circumstance between the use of the car on the road and the accident.”

Was the vehicle actually being used at that time.

The vehicle was parked up, not being driven, and could be argued was simply being used to store the tools etc.  Tools which could have been unloaded at the end of the day.

Therefore, there is a big possibility that should you take the matter to court to claim for the tools, that you could loose, and be further out of pocket covering legal fees. Plus the possibility that Ford push their suggestion further that it was arson.

Expert:  james bruce replied 10 days ago.

The fire fighters may have said a woking fault, but it would require expert fire inspection report to sate that conclusively and not the word of a fireman at the scene.

Can I assist or clarify anything further?

Expert:  james bruce replied 10 days ago.

Can I assist or clarify anything further?

Expert:  james bruce replied 10 days ago.

Thank you for using Just Answer and for allowing me to assist you with your legal enquiry. I am pleased I was able to be of assistance. Please do not hesitate to come back to me for further advice on this or any other legal matter. It will be my pleasure to be able to assist you again.