What will Brexit mean for the hundreds of UK motorists who are unfortunate enough to have an accident in France or another EU member state every year?
In short, leaving the EU will make it harder to claim if you are involved in a car crash on the Continent.
Under current European Motor Directives a UK tourist is given a right of action to make a claim direct against the insurer of the person who caused the accident. Importantly this action or claim can proceed in the injured person’s home country.
If you did have an accident in France or elsewhere on the Continent this summer the EU Motor Directives make claiming for your personal injury compensation and associated losses fairly straightforward.
Leaving the EU will make claiming for your car accident compensation a lot harder. For a start you would likely need to overcome a language barrier, instruct overseas solicitors and incur greater costs to seek your rightful car accident compensation.
Remaining in the EU gives accident victims involved in a car crash in another EU member state a right of action to seek recovery of their damages and losses in the UK, even if injured abroad.
These EU Motor Directives also exist to protect victims of uninsured and untraced drivers.
There are further implications beyond the car crash victim. There is current EU legislation which enables holidaymakers to seek compensation from their package tour operators when they suffer an accident, in say a hotel, abroad again this means a claim can be heard in the UK.
This is all set to change.
As has been widely reported the Brexit from the EU must be completed within two years of giving notice to the EU. It does not look like that notice will be given anytime soon and when it is who will champion the protection of car accident victims or accident victims abroad?