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1.What is Legal Expenses Insurance?

Legal Disputes are often costly and stressful to pursue. Many people are deterred from taking legal action because of the financial risk and uncertainty of the outcome. This is where legal expenses insurance (LEI) can help.

Unlike conventional insurance, LEI does not make a direct payment for a claim, instead the insurance covers the legal costs involved in pursuing a claim. Legal costs include the appointment of solicitors, barristers and expert witnesses. In many cases, the LEI provider manages the claim from start to finish.

2.How long will my claim take to settle?

Please bear in mind we recover uninsured losses from the responsible parties insurer. Third party insurers do not offer such a speedy or helpful service as you would expect from your own insurer, but we would endeavour to settle your claim as quickly as possible.

3. What information do I need to provide to make a claim?

Your Details, the responsible parties name, address, vehicle details, insurance company details, circumstances of the accident, witness details and any other information you feel is relevant.

4. What is 'Mitigation of Loss'?

It is the responsibility of everyone who wishes to make a claim against another party to mitigate their loss. Mitigation means keeping all your losses and expenses resulting from an accident to a minimum. It is essential that you treat all your losses as though there were no assurances a recovery can be made. Treat the losses as though they were at your own expense.

5.Who will pay for my repairs?

The cost of repair is your responsibility to pay unless you have Comprehensive insurance. We appreciate this is not always possible and if you are unable to meet the cost of repair, you must obtain a pro-forma invoice from the garage.

A pro-forma invoice is not the same as an estimate; it will provide a detailed breakdown of the total cost of repairs including labour & parts. You should always look into the possibility of effecting a temporary repair to your vehicle. Simply keep it useable, thereby mitigating your loss.

6. What if my vehicle is a total loss or beyond economical repair?

If you have Comprehensive cover, your insurer will provide you with an offer and dispose with the salvage where necessary. If you have Third Party Only (TPO), Third Party Fire & Theft (TPF&T) cover or you are Comprehensively covered but claiming directly from the third parties insurer, it is common practice for the third party insurer to arrange to inspect your vehicle.

Your vehicle will then be assessed and you will be informed of its pre accident market value less the salvage value. This may be lower than your own valuation placed for insurance purposes. You are only entitled to claim the pre-accident market value less the salvage, which means its value at the time of the accident. If you do not agree with the valuation placed on your vehicle, it is your responsibility to provide evidence to support your own valuation.

Regional trends may affect the valuation of your vehicle. We recommend you obtain local advertisements for similar vehicles, a description of your own vehicles condition and any additional accessories purchased. It would also be helpful to provide us with the original purchase receipt, MOT and registration documents with an indication of the registered mileage at the time of the accident. We ask you to bear in mind that if your vehicle is confirmed to be a total loss then it is your responsibility to purchase a replacement.

7. Who will pay for the hire of alternative transport?

It is in your interest to avoid delays in reporting your claim should you need to hire alternative transport. In any event you must ensure the vehicle hired is similar in specifications to that of your own.

Taking into account questions 5 & 6 above, you must ensure the period of hire is reasonable. In the event you are aware that your vehicle has been declared a total loss, the third party insurers will only agree to consider a claim for a reasonable period thereafter. Your duty to mitigate applies and you are not entitled to incur losses from the date of the accident until settlement of your claim.

8. Who will pay for towing & storage charges?

Reasonable towing charges are recoverable. You should endeavour to move your vehicle to a place of free and safe storage ie your driveway or garage at home. If this is not possible you should move your vehicle to the nearest competent repairer. It is important to realise that charges will be incurred whilst in storage and these are your responsibility to pay.

If it is not possible to arrange an inspection of your vehicle within a period of 14 days following the accident we recommend you arrange removal of your vehicle to a place of free storage. Excessive storage charges will not be recoverable. If your vehicle is incurring storage charges and you are unaware of any arrangements having been made to inspect the vehicle then please contact your case handler immediately.

9. Why do I need to provide documentation?

In a civil claim the burden on proof rests with the claimant, therefore it's up to you to show you have incurred the financial loss you are claiming for by providing the relevant receipts/documents required.

Coplus is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.