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Uneven surface with no lighting is cause for complaint.

Our client tripped and fell in the backyard area of flats where she was visiting her boyfriend who was a tenant.  She suffered a sprained left ankle and alleged that the surface of the backyard was uneven and dangerous and there was no outdoor lighting.

We sent a letter of claim to the Defendant which was promptly acknowledged by the Defendant insurers. Subsequently, the insurers wrote to advise that their insured had no knowledge of the accident.  This was wholly inaccurate as the Claimant had met the owner of the premises as she was walking down the stairs from her boyfriend’s flat with a walking stick two days after her accident.  He had asked her what had happened and she explained that she had fallen down a hole and took him over to the pothole to show him. He commented that it did appear a bit dangerous. He apologized.  A couple of days later the pothole was filled in with some lose chippings.

After months of being told by the Defendant insurers that they could not complete their enquiries until the Defendant had replied they advised that liability was denied.

We therefore took the view that the Defendant was deliberately delaying this claim in order to avoid settlement and that he at no time had a genuine defence and issued proceedings. Following this the client’s insurers agreed to negotiate a settlement of the claim.