Land registry search identifies true defendant after pothole claim
A private landlord has agreed to pay a compensation claim of £6,000
after some initial confusion over who was the actual defendant.
Our client, a York woman, tripped over a pothole
outside a local Spar shop on 12 May 2010. Sustaining a soft tissue injury to her ankle which she was told could take more than 3 years to heal
, she instructed Simpson Millar to seek compensation from the party responsible.
We originally submitted a claim to the local authority. However, it later transpired that while the space in which our client had parked her car – and had fallen while loading her shopping
into the boot of the vehicle – appeared to be a public lay-by, it was in fact the retailer's own private parking
After our first letter of claim was respectfully rejected by City of York Council, we conducted a land registry search. This confirmed that the accident had happened on private land
owned by Spar.
The actual defendant identified, we wrote to Spar alleging a number of breaches of the Occupiers' Liability Act 1957. Among these were its failure to operate a regular system of inspection
to ensure the forecourt in front of the shop was properly maintained; and that it exposed our client to a foreseeable risk of injury which it knew was present.
After negotiations, we secured a favourable settlement for our client of £6,000
inclusive of injury and incidental expenses – £475 more than the defendant's original offer.