A recent Supreme Court decision has helpfully clarified where you stand if you are involved in a road traffic accident with an uninsured driver whilst visiting an EU Member State.
The claim was brought by Tiffany Moreno who was involved in a car accident whilst on holiday in Greece. The driver was uninsured although accepted that the accident was his fault.
The Court was asked to consider whether her claim should be valued under English or Greek Law. Under Greek Law the Claimant would have received far less compensation than if her claim was valued under English Law. To ensure clarity on the issue the case was passed straight to the Supreme Court ("SC") for a decision on this issue.
The Court agreed that it is the law of the state where the accident occurred that should apply and whilst Ms Moreno was able to claim damages from the Motor Insurers Bureau in the UK, and use the UK legal system for her claim the value of her claim had to be dictated by the law of the country in which the accident occurred.
The MIB is a non-profit organisation funded by motor insurers which has been set up to compensate victims of motor accidents where the other party is untraced and/or uninsured.
MIB Chief Executive Ashton West said: "The outcome of this case is that the law for damages will now be applied consistently to both uninsured and insured cases".
"The MIB's role in this case was to help UK residents with their claims for compensation while at the same time ensuring that UK motorists (who ultimately provide the MIB with funds) are protected."
"In this case, the MIB is acting on behalf of its Greek equivalent, the Greek Guarantee Fund and the appropriate way to value the claim was therefore by Greek Law."
The MIB has welcomed the clarification as it means that they can now deal with a number of other cases which have been on hold, awaiting the outcome of the Supreme Court's decision.