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Saturday 26 January 2013 4.26pm
It is said that the wheels of justice grind exceedingly slow, but fine.
In the light of that I want to throw something out there to see what our enlightened contributors think of it, and how they think that it may pan out, or should have already panned out.
Where I live I share a very wide drive with my immediate neighbour to my right, no dividing line or fence, nor raised brick, nothing.
Some 14 months back the neighbour opposite reversed from her drive, on to my immediate neighbour's drive, as was customary for all of us, but in doing so she reversed into my immediate neighbour's car, only gently, causing a small indentation in the rear bumper of the immediate neighbour's car. This was seen by the adult daughter of the neighbour to my left, who saw the offending driver pull back on to her drive, exit her car, and check both her rear bumper and also the rear of the car that she had hit. Presuming that the neighbour at fault would inform the owner of the car that she had collided with, the witness left the scene to go to work. It subsequently materialised that nothing of the sort had happened and it was only when the neighbour to my left asked the neighbour to my right when the damage would be repaired that the injured party learned who the offending party was. On enquiring at the offending neighbour's house as to what they would like to do to settle the matter, the offending neighbour denied all knowledge of the incident. When informed that there was an independent witness the offender not only said that she was not interested, but that her husband felt that the taxi driver who lived next to the neighbour whose car had been damaged, (me), could just as easily be the guilty party! I can only assume that the owner of the damaged car informed her insurers, and that they then contacted the offending driver, as I , not having witnessed any of it, have kept out of it. On the odd occasion that my wife has asked how the case is progressing the injured party has replied, "it's in the hands of my insurers." My best guess is that it will come to a civil court case eventually, and that the offender will inevitably lose and have to compensate the owner of the damaged car, plus any costs that she has incurred, but I find it hard to get my head around the fact that (a), she has denied it all, knowing that there is a witness, and (b), that it will eventually cost her more in paying for the repair plus court costs, when she could have done the right thing 14 months back.
Saturday 26 January 2013 5.47pm
Blimey,14 months and still ongoing!
Did the neighbour to your left witness the actual collision, or did she just witness the offending party checking her car and the car of the injured party, and assume the neighbour opposite had bumped into the car of the neighbour on your right?
Has the injured party had the 'minor indentation' in her bumper repaired in the intervening 14 months, and if so how much did it cost? If not, what is the estimate for the job and is it worth 14 months+ of hassle pursuing the matter. If it's a cut and dried case with the neighbour to your left being a witness, one wonders why the insurers are dragging their feet and not settling such a minor incident quickly.
Will you be suing the offending neighbour opposite for defamation of character and emotional distress for suggesting you may have been responsible for the incident.
Have you installed a barrier across your drive to prevent the offending neighbour using your drive to reverse?
Sunday 27 January 2013 12.33am
Yes phoney, she both heard and witnessed the actual collision, and no, the injured party has still to have the repair effected. The original estimate, bearing in mind that the car was some 3 days old at the time was circa 800.00 as I recall. Both you and I are in agreement in wondering why the insurers are apparently dragging their feet in bringing this affair to a speedy conclusion. No, I won't be suing for emotional distress, nor defamation of character, none of my neighbours would believe that I would perpetrate a crime like this and not hold my hands up in surrender for doing so. No I have not installed a barrier across my drive, although my wife has often voiced the opinion that it may not be a bad idea.
Sunday 27 January 2013 2.50pm
There are other aspects to this incident to bear in mind, certainly one of which may have occurred to the offending party.
A few years ago I heard a noise outside my house which, coupled with the sound of a car's engine made me think that there had been an impact of sorts.
I looked out of my window and saw a car attempting to make a 3 point turn.
As it reversed it struck my neighbour's low wall, I assumed that this was the second time it had done so, and that the first noise I heard was it doing so too.
I made a note of the registration number and went down to the street, where the neighbour whose wall had been struck was writing the number down too as the car drove away from the scene.
There was a noticeable crack in the wall, but it was still standing.
A few weeks later some youths leaned or sat on the wall and it collapsed into my neighbour's garden.
To cut to the chase this all culminated in a civil court case where the neighbour sued the car driver for the rebuilding of the wall.
I was the only witness called, but when the defence counsel asked me what happened immediately following the collision, I replied that the wall collapsed. Obviously it hadn't, it collapsed a few weeks later, but I had forgotten that.
The defence counsel then accused me of lying and said that I would probably say anything to win the day for my neighbour.
I didn't deliberately lie, but so much time had elapsed between the incident happening and the date of the court case that I had inadvertently described the result of the impact wrongly.
The outcome was that the court found in favour of the driver, and my neighbour was saddled with paying for the wall himself.
Bearing in mind that the incident Tom referred to happened 14 months ago perhaps the offending party is hoping that the neighbour's daughter will get it wrong in court too.
Tuesday 7 May 2013 10.27pm
The case was heard at Woolwich County Court last week, the result was that the neighbour opposite, who had struck my neighbour's car, was judged to be at fault.
In a further twist, the guilty party had persuaded someone where she worked to say that she arrived early that day, so could not have been seen reversing from her drive at the time that the incident occurred. When this person was asked to make a statement attesting to that, he demurred, presumably with a view to not wishing to be seen to have perjured himself. The offending driver was saddled with costs of around 2000, and their insurers will have to pay for the damage to my neighbour's car. So, from an original estimate of 800, they are now faced with circa 2000 costs, plus an inevitable hike in their insurance premiums. As our American cousins say, "Go figure."
Thursday 9 May 2013 9.21am
Happy end!
Thursday 9 May 2013 3.04pm
Interesting to read how it all ended. Wonder if the 2000 costs will be paid?
With a view to neighbourly harmony I imagine all parties involved will get together for a drink to put the whole unpleasant incident behind you? (That's a joke)
Thursday 9 May 2013 11.53pm
phoney wrote:
Interesting to read how it all ended. Wonder if the 2000 costs will be paid?
With a view to neighbourly harmony I imagine all parties involved will get together for a drink to put the whole unpleasant incident behind you? (That's a joke)



phoney, you have a great career beckoning as a comedy script writer I'd say!
Saturday 11 May 2013 11.19am
Has the injured party had the 'minor indentation' in her bumper repaired in the intervening 14 months, and if so how much did it cost? If not, what is the estimate for the job and is it worth 14 months+ of hassle pursuing the matter. If it's a cut and dried case with the neighbour to your left being a witness, one wonders why the insurers are dragging their feet and not settling such a minor incident quickly.
British Museum
Saturday 11 May 2013 12.44pm
No, she had not had the repair effected in the intervening 14 months.
The original estimate was IIRC 800, and although my neighbour never actually said so to me, I guess that her attitude was one of, "I have been wronged, I am in the right, I will do the right thing and go through the normal procedure until inevitably it is resolved, and I am vindicated."
I can only assume that the reason for the insurance "feet dragging" was because the guilty party vehemently denied culpability, so her insurance company would not pay for the damage until a settlement was finally imposed by the court.
The hassle of letter writing/form filling/phone calls/emailing must have eventually seemed worthwhile when "the enemy" finally got hit with a 2000 come-uppance.
I presume that my neighbour will now have the repair carried out.

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