Every driver needs to know this... My MD was telling me about a minor car accident he had recently. Ever since, he's been plagued by calls from firms asking him if he was injured. When he says “No” he's asked if he's sure he wasn’t injured. Again he says “No, I wasn’t injured”. So he's then asked “Was there anyone else in the vehicle who might have been injured”. He has two objections to this. Firstly, he objects to being encouraged to make a claim for injury that clearly isn’t warranted and, secondly, he wonders from where they got his personal details. Recent law changes arising from something called The Jackson Review aimed to stamp out such ‘ambulance-chasing’ practices, particularly by banning the referral fees offered by law firms. NO WIN NO FEE These sort of 'No Win No Fee' arrangements mean that if you don’t win your case there is no charge levied by the law firm/accident management firm for their services. It has always been worth a punt even if there wasn’t much chance of success. However, many won’t appreciate the sting in the tail - the flip-side of the coin where if you win, a fee most likely will be charged and it could be as much as 25% of your compensation award. This kind of approach is known as After The Event (ATE) cover, where assistance is offered or solicited following an accident/injury. Since the reforms, if there’s not much chance of success these providers tend to back away quite quickly rather than fight your corner and get you what you might deserve, leaving you on your own. LEGAL EXPENSES COVER A better alternative to 'No Win No Fee' is something known as Before The Event (BTE) cover. Usually called Legal Expenses cover, this is arranged in advance (to run alongside your motor insurance). Chris Knott Insurance offers this protection which is designed to pay your legal costs & expenses to pursue a claim. We have taken care to additionally ensure that our Legal Expenses offering guarantees that there will be NO deduction at all for costs from any compensation award. I thought it might be useful to see these two very different approaches operating in stark monetary terms. So here goes… If using a 'No Win No Fee' type firm (ATE) an injury award of just £8,000 could see a fee of 25% (£2,000) being payable for success, reducing your payout to £6,000. In comparison, that £2,000 would buy you 80 years’ worth of BTE cover with Chris Knott Insurance (charged at £25 for the year) and you’d get to keep 100% of your award. For the best service and to guarantee you keep 100% of your injury award it really does make sound financial sense to arrange cover in advance, just in case. To add (BTE) Legal Expenses Cover to your Chris Knott policy at the next renewal please call 0800 917 2274 or 01424 200477. PLEASE BE ASSURED TOO THAT WE NEVER PASS ON ANY DETAILS TO ANYONE FOR THE PURPOSES OF PESTERING CUSTOMERS TO CLAIM FOR INJURIES. We only share data as necessary to directly service your cover and to process any claims you instigate. best, Nick PS. Don't forget to call us if your car insurance is due in the coming months as we have prizes available until the end of the year. Details of this month's prize draw have previously been posted to the site.