I was in an accident last year which has been steadily heading towards court. I got knocked off my bike by a guy coming out of a junction, turning right in to traffic and knocking in to me while I filtered past a slow moving bus. It was a big lane and I wasn't over the line or in front of the bus when I got hit. The bus driver has acted as a witness for me stating that the driver pulled out in to traffic without looking and without any indication from the bus that he was safe to do so. I was filtering at about 10mph which is confirmed by the bus driver. The car driver also admitted not being able to see past the bus at the scene which was backed by my witness but he is obviously contesting liability.
Over the last 14 months the car driver has changed offers of liability from 80/20 in his favour to 50/50 and now to this part 36 offer. I thought I had a pretty solid case and was ready to take it all the way to court when this latest offer came. The car driver has offered to settle all my costs in 'full and final settlement' without admitting liability via a part 36 offer. This initially sounded like full admission of guilt but the more I read about this the less sure I am. My solicitor is advising me to accept and warned of SEVERE financial implications if I decline.
The solicitor currently fighting for me is only representing my personal injury and costs associated to the accident. My insurance company are sitting on the sideline waiting on the outcome verdict to decide where the fault lies and decide who pays for the vehicle damage. It's therefore really important to me that this guy is found to be at fault.
Before the accident my insurance fully comp was £400, now the best quotes fully comp are over £2000 due to a fault accident UNLESS this guy admits FULL liability. If I accept any liability my underwriters are pulling my NCB. I have told my solicitor that I would be willing to wave all the other costs attached to my case as long he admitted full liability and I have also suggested arbitration. None of this has been taken up. My solicitor says that even with a four leaf clover stitched to my rabbit foot that in court the judge will likely default to legal precedent or case law and the best I would get would be 90/10 liability in my favour. This would be worse if he hasn't had his frosties or is an avid anti biker.
If I lose this case I can't afford to insure my bike fully comp. The settlement monies won at court will pay towards the first year of insurance but the next three years will be expensive while I build up no claims again. I really don't know if I should accept this or go to court and seek 100% victory. Where do I stand with my bike insurance if I accept this offer? This offer makes no mention of how much liability I am accepting with the offer. I will be speaking to my solicitors again but I'm really interested in a second opinion. Any help or comments very welcome!!