A former Miss England contestant and semi-professional footballer, Amy Laban, has been jailed for two months following admitting deception and pleading guilty to contempt of court with a false whiplash claim.
Ms Laban and a friend, Ms Hazeldine, made claims for £3,000 for whiplash following a road traffic accident in April 2012. Following the failure to attend medical examinations regarding their injuries, the defendant applied for the claim to be dismissed. Evidence was subsequently found showing the model taking part in fitness tests and doing a skydive during the period while she was affected by the whiplash injury. Following the guilty plea, both were sentenced to two months in prison.
In her evidence, Ms Laban explained that she had been pushed into making a claim by a law firm after being harassed by various claims companies.
William Broadbent of Penningtons Manches commented: “Those considering making claims for personal injury should take heed of this case. Although most whiplash claims are genuine, a number of bogus claims are made and it is right that the courts are taking a stand against these.
“We receive phone calls and text messages after any minor accident stating how much compensation we would receive if we brought a claim. While it may be tempting, making a bogus claim is fraudulent and the implications may be severe. As Ms Laban explained, these companies may be pushy but be aware of the potential penalties before you agree to proceed with a claim. It is not just free money.
“Ms Laban’s case shows that insurers are increasingly on the lookout for such claims, no matter how small they may be. Unfortunately, these cases discredit those with genuine claims, who may be accused of exaggeration or falsification of a claim with no sound basis.”