Dr Nicholas Bevan

Dr Nicholas Bevan

Wednesday, 10 April 2013


The New Law Journal has kindly given permission for me to post open links to my four part series of articles, 'On the Right Road?' published in February 2013.  These articles point out the loopholes in our statutory and extra statutory provision for providing a compensatory guarantee for victims of insured, insufficiently insured, uninsured and unidentified drivers. They also explain what we can do to protect our client's rights.

My basic thesis is that our national provision for protecting the compensatory rights of motor vehicle victims is in a shambles.  Even the Court of Appeal has failed to adopt a consistent approach to interpreting the relevant provisions.

The defects in our statutory provision expose innocent victims, adjudged entitled to compensation, to the risk of being left empty handed.  This can happen even where the responsible party has third party motor insurance in place.  This is because in a number of instances a motor insurer can either exploit loopholes in the statutory provision or rely on its own contractual restrictions to avoid any duty to indemnify the defendant / policyholder.  Additional exclusions of liability, unjust procedural conditions precedent to liability are included in the  Uninsured Drivers Agreement 1999 and the Untraced Drivers Agreement 2003.  These agreements also empower the MIB, who administer these schemes, to make certain deductions from a victim's compensatory entitlement.

As a result of these failings our current national law provision in this area, far from guaranteeing a victims' compensatory entitlement, has in fact reduced it to something of a lottery. Fortunately, most victims are protected and those that are not can successfully challenge these injustices, if properly advised, by relying on the superior provision to be found within the Sixth Motor Insurance Directive. Even so, our national law provision in this area is unsatisfactory and in need of urgent revision.

The Department for Transport's consultation paper, which followed within a matter of days of my final article being published, has set a deadline of 26 April 2013 for your responses. The proposed reforms do not go nearly far enough.  See my earlier post for details.

I plan to post more materials shortly to help those interested in submitting a response.

Links to full copies of my New Law Journal articles in February 2013

You can access my 'On the Right Road?' series of articles by clicking on the following links and this will also allow you to take a peak at the smart new format of the UK's leading weekly law journal:

They cover the following areas of law:
  • Part VI Road Traffic Act 1988 
  • The EC (Rights Against Insurers) Regulations 2002
  • The MIB Uninsured Drivers Agreement 1999
  • The MIB Untraced Drivers Agreement 2003 (but only briefly)
  • The relevant case law, including the Court of Appeal ruling in EUI v Bristol Alliance Partnerhip [2012] Civ 1166, that I consider to be per incuriam.(I explain why in the next issue of the Journal of Personal Injury Law)

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