Action Desk: Bus firm’s insurer won’t pay out

Disgruntled driver John Francis of Stannington.
Disgruntled driver John Francis of Stannington.
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When John Francis’ car was shunted by a bus the force snapped his head back so hard his flat cap ended up on the rear seat.

But while his whiplash only lasted a few days, his car damage claim has been dragging on for four months following the accident at the Northern General Hospital in Sheffield.

John, aged 85, says the bus driver was full of concern, but the company’s insurer, Aviva, was not ready to admit liability.

It launched an investigation into what happened, which included a demand for CCTV images from the security operator at the hospital. Aviva says it is still waiting.

Meanwhile Mr Francis’ own policy with insurers LV came up for renewal and - because no one had accepted liability - recorded a fault claim against him, bumping his premiums up by £100.

John, of Myers Grove Lane, Stannington, said: “I’m so disillusioned, after four months I don’t believe a word they say. Now they want CCTV - how do they go on with a pile-up on the M1?

“I feel I have done nothing wrong but my claim is under suspicion.

“Due to the boot of my car being wedged shut I can’t access my spare wheel and I haven’t dared make more than local trips for months.”

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An LV spokeswoman said: “We have reinstated Mr Francis’ no claims discount and refunded the additional premium that he paid at the time of his renewal.”

But Aviva is still holding out. The company accepted liability for the accident on the day Action Desk called - but it is still refusing to pay out the estimated £800 claim.

A spokeswoman said: “We are sorry for the time this is taking, but we are still looking into the circumstances of the accident and we need to consider all the information from both our customer and Mr Francis - as is usual where there are issues of damage and potential injury.

“Our aim is to deal with this as quickly as we can once we have seen the CCTV footage.”