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Liability for roundabout accident

I had an accident when I avoided hitting a car that changed suddenly into my lane on a roundabout. He was on the inside lane in very slow moving traffic (around 5mph), and I was between two exits. Due to me having to avoid the car the bike hit the ground and I came off. The car driver did not indicate before turning and denied responsibility there and then.
I contacted my insurer and they said it was my fault as I avoided a collision with the other driver. I don’t accept this – the reason for my evasive action was the car’s sudden change in direction without indication. What can I do?

Jason, Hove



Your insurer is wrong. If the other driver did not indicate or look properly and simply cut you up then it is likely to be mostly his fault if not entirely his fault. However, there was an unhelpful Court of Appeal case in 20 years ago called Grace v Tanner which was decided as 50/50 blame. Court of Appeal case decisions are binding on lower courts in cases of similar facts. As a result many roundabout accident cases are settled on a 50/50 basis. A lot of the time they should not be due to the individual fact sensitivity of each case. In your case, you should do better than 50/50 and hopefully you will succeed in full. I would need all of the evidence to be more precise on the likely liability outcome.



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