Our fraud team has achieved savings of over £168,000 by successfully asking the court to strike out a fundamentally dishonest claim.
Whilst at work as a dryliner in April 2018, the claimant alleged that a scaffold tube fell from the top of the scaffolding platform and struck his arm. He claimed that the injuries he sustained to his arm and knee, along with psychological injuries, had prevented him from working since the accident.
Liability was accepted and medical evidence was produced by the claimant setting out his inability to work and ongoing losses. The schedule of loss totalled in excess of £67,000, with ongoing future losses accruing at over £22,000 per year.
Investigations conducted by Clyde & Co’s intelligence analysts uncovered possible evidence of the claimant zorbing only ten days post-accident. It was also found that, in September 2018 (only five months post-accident), the claimant had set up a business Facebook page advertising general building work and decorating services.
The claimant regularly posted images of jobs he had undertaken and we were able to pinpoint when some of this work had been done. In particular, we were able to date one Christmas 2018 job by reference to a customer’s post which stated that the claimant had "kindly squeezed her in just before Christmas".
Precise Part 18 CPR questions were put to the claimant, and he answered them by positively asserting that he had not been able to return to work. The Facebook evidence clearly undermined this claim and provided enough evidence to warrant a pleading of fraud in our defence. The claimant’s initial response was to say that we had got it all wrong, but he provided no details to substantiate his assertion. The claimant’s initial protestation quickly changed to silence and instructions to his solicitor ceased.
An application to the court was made, the claimant’s solicitor coming off record and his claim was struck out. An enforceable costs order in excess of £29,000 was made in the defendant’s favour.