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A blow to claimants?

Has the low speed impact argument muddied the waters for road traffic accident claims? Lianne Naughton reports

31 March 2006

Road traffic accidents are becoming increasingly complex. What were once clear-cut cases have become muddied by the increasingly popular low speed impact argument.

Minor impact theory

Put simply, the theory goes as follows: the defendants accept that the claimant was involved in a collision for which their insured is liable, however they argue that the impact was so minor that it could not have caused the claimant an injury. If the claimant alleges injury, the defendants contend that no such injury exists or, if it does, that it is not accident-related.

The claimant is therefore left in a very uncertain position. For an honest claimant who has been injured in a road traffic accident, such arguments can be very distressing, especially when, as the diligent solicitor, you have to advise your client of the possible criminal ramifications if they were to lose their case. Clients who came to you because they were innocent vehicle occupants are suddenl...

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