- Tracing dodgy witness for insurance claim
I was involved in a bike accident last year. My claim against the driver has been torpedoed by a witness that appeared on the scene after I had left. I know that the witness is lying because his story is the same as the driver and is not what happened at all.
My solicitor has given up on the case as he cannot be sure of beating the witness in court.
The driver lives over 50 miles away from the accident. The witness gave his address as 33 miles further away from the driver.
The witness has an unusual name and on a search on the electoral role comes up as his last address in 2007 living 6 miles from the driver.
He is not listed on the electoral role for his address on the witness statement. That house is a rental property and has a full set of couples over the last few years.
He is a retired person and no other details come up on google.
If I could find out that either he or his address is bogus then my claim would be back on.
To be honest, it is not really the claim, but the fact that they are lying that winds me up the most.
I am very close to giving up, so this is my last chance to get anywhere.
So has anyone got any ideas about tracing people?Posted 4 years agopictonroadSubscriber
Do you know where the driver lives?
Send an anonymous letter claiming to have got wind of his plan and maybe pointing out that the course of action he’s heading down generally has far worse consequences than the relatively trivial original issue.
Perhaps a link to the Chris Huhne case?Posted 4 years agokcalSubscriber
I’d imagine the costs and complexity of trying to ‘prove’ the witness and the driver are in cahoots (and so committing fraud / perjury) is what’s worrying the solicitor.
I guess there are ways of discrediting the witness – tear his story apart; but as you say trying to prove his details are a blatant lie is difficult – private detective territory.
Is it a civil case, or court (police)? Is it possible to get police involved (again) – if you were knocked off bike, presumably they were called.
hope you get successful closure mate.Posted 4 years agocrankboyMember
I assume you are not paying for your solicitor. He or she will be on some policy where they have to assess a better than 50/50 chance of success to proceed.
How much is your claim worth , my grazed hip and opened up elbow came out at a low settlement of £2500. if it is worth over £5000 it would be worth pursing properly and paying yourself in which case a decent inquiry agent may bring up a connection between the witness and driver. If it is worth less you could easily small claims it yourself.
There insurance co will usually offer something if you issue proceedings.Posted 4 years agocrankboyMember
phone an inquiry agent . get them to go to the witness address with an exact copy of their statement with the perjury warning on top .
A) hello are you Mr Blogs I am making an inquiry about an accident DETAILS.
option one ” never heard of him mate no Mr Blogs here ” take details of occupiers previous tenants etc go to B
option two “yep I am mr Blogs ” excellent it’s just a formality but I have your statement would you please read it carefully make sure it is 100% accurate then sign the statement and the warning at the top please be sure you have read the warning before you sign.
B) get the other side to confirm the address.
if same as previously given explain it is false and demand an explanation as you believe something untoward is happening and are considering involving the police if there is not a good explanation. ( this wording is important to keep you out of trouble demanding a settlement to avoid police involvement would be a crime)
if it is different go back to A
you are entitled to approach witnesses there is no property in a witness , it is a crime to interfere with them seeking to get them to change their story or withdraw their evidence.
My guess is an enquiry agent will charge about £100 for this.Posted 4 years agowillberMember
As mentioned above, a witness that doesn’t stop at the time really isn’t worth listening to. From experience, a recent bump I was involved in went this way – i.e. details exchanged at the scene, police attended etc. Then 3 hours later I get a call from one party stating that a ‘witness’ had just rang his office stating that he had seen the accident, and had provided is details. I explained that as he hadn’t stopped at the scene and as such questioned how could his evidence could ever be credible. The upshot was that the witness account was discounted. This was a civil matter though, not criminal – so if yours is criminal it may be different but cant really imagine how.Posted 4 years ago
Cheers for the replies.
Driver says the witness was at the scene after I left. But lots of other details don’t add up. My solicitor says it is very unlikely but not impossible that the witness’ story could be true. Judge’s don’t like people being accused of lying without proof.
Crankboy – you are correct. The 50/50 chance of success was mentioned. An enquiry agent does sound like a good idea. I have been in contact with another cycling solicitor who seemed helpful, but I need something more. Maybe they could recommend an agent for me. Thanks for the advice.Posted 4 years agototalshellSubscriber
crankboy is about spot on..Posted 4 years ago
get third party to do as described, establish who lives at addreess establish why witness was a scene and with whom, how they travelled to scene establish who there employer is and what there hours of work are.. all sensible stuff that any witness will be happy to provide .. or not as the case may be..
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