Café owner faces losing home and business after no-win no-fee lawyers rack up £33,000 bill... fighting a £2,000 compensation claim because the gasman slipped over
on a wet floor at her café whilst reading her meter.
The claimant Richard Newsham, 67, who said he broke two ribs in the fall instructed a firm of personal injury solicitors working on a conditional free arrangement.
Maybe I'm reading too much into that but there seems to be a whiff of accusation there. Surely it occurred to DM Reporter that someone would have checked to see if his ribs were actually broken. Then again, I haven't had as much exposure to the courts as him/her, so I'll defer.
Fair enough, it's a lot of money to pay back, especially when doing so in instalments has been refused. It must be tough knowing you're going to lose your home and your business, which also provides work for her mother and granddaughter*. However...
'We can’t understand how it could have been so much for such a small accident. We have fought it for years'
Her solicitors say because she refused to pay the fees of the claimant’s solicitors, Marsden Rawsthorn, when they stood at less than £20,000, she has now been hit with a bill for £30,087.39, which included interest and a ‘success fee’.
Paragraph 19 ends things off nicely with a quote from the meter-reading non-rib-breaking ambulance chasing charlatan:
[Mr Newsham said] :'It happened years ago and they denied it from the start. They settled with me out of court, but continued to dispute the legal costs. I don’t really have a comment on how I feel about it, other than if they had just paid it when the ruling was made perhaps it would not have been so much.'
Smart bloke if you ask me.
*So two other people who could have seen to the wet floor other than the owner/manager, who presumably knew the meter-reader was coming, as at least in my experience, they let the premises know in advance.
edt. Just seen this:
'Mrs Taylor’s position is awful, and is a direct result of actions by a previous Government and the insurance industry. Claimants used to bring actions under legal aid, where costs were regulated.
I was under the impression it was the Tories who cut Legal Aid, no? Or when they say "direct result of actions by a previous Government" to they mean "Losing an election"?