horwich farrelly

Telematics evidence helps defeat claims worth more than £10,000

May, 24, 2017

Horwich Farrelly has successfully defended claims worth in excess of £10,000 against Admiral Insurance, after telematics evidence from their policyholder’s vehicle showed the collision at the heart of the claim took place at just over 1mph. This contradicted the two claimants’ accounts that the incident had caused substantial damage to their vehicle totalling over £5,200 and personal injuries to the driver worth £2,500.

The use of telematics data was instrumental in proving that the collision occurred at very low speed and could not have caused all the damage claimed, highlighting the value of such technology in fighting false claims.

Close up of side of ambulance

Background

The case concerned an incident which took place in Ilford, east London in October 2015. Admiral’s policyholder was driving a Seat Ibiza in heavy, stop-start traffic when he collided with the rear of a private ambulance driven by the first claimant, Chantelle Boland.

The telematics data obtained from the Seat indicated that he was travelling at around 1.25mph at the time of impact, resulting in very minor damage to the front nearside corner of his vehicle, with repairs estimated at £350.

However, the owners of the ambulance, Private Ambulance Services Limited, submitted a claim to Admiral for vehicle repairs, hire costs and recovery charges totalling almost £8,000. In addition, Miss Boland brought a claim for personal injury, alleging that she experienced muscular back pain for five months, during which time she was placed on light duties at work.

After reviewing the telematics data, Admiral had significant concerns about the legitimacy of the claims and instructed Horwich Farrelly’s counter fraud team to investigate.

Images taken by Admiral’s policyholder at the scene and forensic expert engineering evidence proved that the collision could not possibly have caused the significant damage that Private Ambulance Service Ltd had initially suggested.

Horwich Farrelly and Admiral maintained their denial of the claim, and Private Ambulance Service subsequently discontinued their claim for repair and hire costs in its entirety.

Trial

Miss Boland’s claim for injury still proceeded to trial on 26 January 2017 at Clerkenwell & Shoreditch County Court before Judge White.

The judge heard evidence gathered by Horwich Farrelly which revealed Miss Boland had only sought medical attention two weeks after the incident, and after she had instructed solicitors to pursue her claim for injury. Moreover, no evidence whatsoever was provided to support Miss Boland’s alleged five-month period of light duties, despite the fact that the second claimant was her employer and accordingly that such work place restriction must surely have been easily verifiable if genuine.

After considering the policyholder’s and Miss Boland’s evidence, and in particular after taking into account the telematics data, Judge White found that the collision occurred at an extremely low speed and it was therefore unfeasible that the resulting impact could have caused Miss Boland’s alleged injuries. As a result, the claim was dismissed.

Commentary

This case shows just how important telematics technology can be in helping to fight against fraudulent claims. Having presented the telematics evidence, Judge White was clear that the damage and the injuries could not have been caused by such a low speed collision.

This is a fantastic result for the policyholder and our client, Admiral Insurance, who have avoided a costly claim for repairs. It serves as a clear warning for would be fraudsters because technology provides crucial data, shining a spotlight on the truth and helping us defeat dishonest claims.

We would like to give particular credit to Litigation Executive, Asher Rubin, on helping secure this impressive result.

 

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