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Snow business with Litigation

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The extreme weather is back and with it tales of frustration, fraught journeys and frantic forays out for supplies.

There are always heartwarming tales of community spirit to balance this out, where neighbours have in public-spirited mode cleared drives, pathways and public spaces.

In the bout of extreme weather at the beginning of the year this course of action was still causing some consternation - with the fear of being sued if someone had an accident present in some people’s minds.

This ‘part myth part misunderstanding’ of how the law works in this area has caused unnecessary concern amongst the general public as David Jones Partner in KH Injury Lawyers, part of Yorkshire Law firm Keeble Hawson LLP explains:

“There is no law stopping you from clearing snow and ice from the pavement outside your house and it’s unlikely that you would be sued if you do it carefully, exercising reasonable responsibility to ensure the pavement is not more dangerous than before.

There are now clear guidelines about clearing snow on many local authority websites and at directgov.uk. The good news is that they also underline the individual responsibility of people out and about to be careful.”

“Any general snow related accident claim made would of course have to be considered individually on its particular facts.”

“It is interesting to note though that figures from the Compensation Recovery Unit (CRU) for the last ten years seem to on balance contradict the rise of the ‘compensation culture’.”

“For example, although motoring claims have risen since 2000, public liability, employer liability and clinical negligence claims made are less in number than they were a decade ago.”

David Jones can be contacted at davidjones@keeblehawson.co.uk
 

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