John Mcguinness column
I was riding along a rural road when I was confronted by debris being spewed over a hedge from a field to my left. I came off and ended up in the hedge on the other side of the road. To cut a long story short, we have got to a position where the farmer’s insurer say they cannot identify whether the hedge cutting/mulching machinery belonged to the farm or a third party contractor so have directed me to claim against the Motor Insurers Bureau. But my solicitors say they cannot do that as the accident was contributed to by a vehicle on private land. Robin, email
AThis is an intriguing one with many possible outcomes! The Motor Insurers’ Bureau (MIB) used not to have to compensate if an accident happened on private land which they could try and argue in your case because although you were on the road, the farm vehicle was not.
However, they now have to compensate for private land accidents due to a UK court ruling in line with European Court decisions. The MIB has permission to appeal the recent decision, so for the time being I would press the farmer to provide details of contractors that day to identify the vehicle and its insurer. Failing which, the farmer’s public liability insurer could be in the frame. It is often the case that farmers use the same insurer so that may make it easier. Your fall-back position should be the MIB assuming the recent decision stands.
‘The farm’s public liability could be in the frame’