Have I won if my opponent admits ‘primary liability’?
‘It will allow the defendant to argue that you were to some degree at fault’
I was involved in a motorcycle accident last year. I am running the claim myself and the defendant’s insurance company have recently written to me admitting ‘primary liability’ for the accident. Does this mean I have won my case?
In short, it means the defendant has admitted they are at least ‘a bit’ to blame. However, this is not a full admission of liability and the usage of the term ‘primary liability’ is unfortunate and often misapplied by defendants, when what they really mean is that they admit liability but reserve the right to raise contributory negligence and/or medical causation arguments.
A primary liability admission will allow the defendant to argue that you were to some degree at fault for the collision. This has the potential to make a huge difference to any damages you receive and means further investigations may need to take place. If possible we would always try to achieve a full admission of liability where the defendant accepts 100% fault for the accident and, subject to any medical causation arguments, will mean that you receive 100% of your compensation.
It is important to clarify what the defendant is trying to say in your case. The defendant may simply have misused the term and may still intend pay you 100% of your claim. It is therefore important to clarify with the defendant what they mean by their admission before accepting any settlement offer.