After you have been through the long and sometimes complicated process of winning an award of compensation from someone who has caused you injury then you will naturally want your compensation to arrive in your bank account as quickly as possible.
However, what happens if the person who caused your accident is slow in paying you compensation? This was a problem that befell an Accident Advice Helpline client after a recent injury claim in Lamberhurst.
Injury claim in Lamberhurst and the reluctant payment of damages
The customer who contacted Accident Advice Helpline about the injury claim in Lamberhurst was previously employed in a sheet metal factory. The injury claim in Lamberhurst occurred when an improperly fitted guard on a piece of cutting machinery allowed a greater gap to be created than should have been allowed by the manufacturers guidelines. In the horrific accident, the tip of the victim’s longest finger was partially severed, and required extensive surgery to reattach.
The victim terminated his employment while on sick leave, unwilling to work for such a lax employer. Instituting a personal injury claim through Accident Advice Helpline, the man was awarded almost £5,000 in compensation by the County Court which heard the injury claim in Lamberhurst. However, the employer has been slow in paying the damages award and the courts deadline for payment expires next week. Of course, Accident Advice Helpline are on hand to offer continuing support – which does not cease at the courtroom door.
Contempt of Court
The court has special authority to order a party to act, or not act, in specified ways. These are called court orders, and a failure to obey a court order within the time period stated in the order can give rise to the criminal and civil offence of contempt of court – essentially the failure to obey the court.
Contempt of court is generally the sanction used when the defendant fails to pay damages in an appropriate time. By failing to convey the compensation to the injury claim Lamberhurst victim the sheet metal business has placed itself in danger of contempt of court proceedings, which Accident Advice Helpline staff will begin if the compensation is not paid within the next few weeks. If found guilty then the directors of the business or the business as a legal individual could be imprisoned or fined for their contempt. It is also common for the court to make an additional compensation adjustment to take account of an interest which should be due on the compensation sum.
Fortunately, with the assistance of Accident Advice Helpline, the injury victim will see his compensation after this unacceptable delay. However, if you have experienced delay in receiving your award of compensation then you should not stand for it. Contact Accident Advice Helpline for advice on this or any other matter. You can contact us free on 0800 689 0500 or 0333 500 0993 from a mobile phone.
Date Published: 5th October 2013
Author: David Brown