By now everybody will have seen the variety of letters sent out by defendant insurers to try to dissuade CHOs from supplying a replacement vehicle during the current COVOD epidemic. We now present the sequel, or at least as envisaged by Keoghs.
Below is a copy of their standard pre-action request for further information. For those off you that subscribe to the Credit Hire Forum, this document has been posted on the Forum discussion board (or will be by 11am) and solicitors, counsel and others that subscribe are invited to comment or suggest appropriate responses in order that some form of ‘best output’ might either follow or emerge. Be in no doubt that this is the insurers first co-ordinated output to bring the challenge to current hires that will not settle within the GTA.
Comments, opinions, draft responses or suggestions as to whether a standard response would help?
Keoghs Pre-Action Request for Information and Key Documents pursuant to CPR PRACTICE DIRECTION – PRE-ACTION CONDUCT AND PROTOCOLS
1.Please state what your need for the replacement vehicle was at the start of the hire and throughout the period of hire.
a.What was the hire vehicle used for?
b.How many miles were travelled in it during the hire period?
c.Did you have access to any other vehicles within during the period off hire, either in your household or via your occupation?
d.Please specify what other vehicles you had access to and state why these could not have been used instead of hiring.
e.Would a smaller or less prestigious vehicle have met your needs? If not, please state why.
2.Please set out all relevant facts in relation to the reasonableness of the period of hire. In particular:
a.If your vehicle was repaired, please confirm the following:
i.The date the repairs commenced
ii.The date the repairs completed
iii.How much the repairs cost
iv.The name and address of the repairer
v.Please provide a copy of the repair invoice
b.If your vehicle was replaced, please confirm the following:
i.The date you received the cheque for the vehicle damage
ii.The date you purchased a replacement vehicle
iii.The registration number of the replacement
iv.The price that you paid
v.Please provide a copy of the purchase receipt
3.Please set out all relevant facts in relation to the reasonableness of the rate of hire. In particular:
a.Did you compare the rate of hire with other rates on offer from regular hire companies?
b.Did you receive an offer of an alternative replacement vehicle from the defendant insurer? If so, why did you not accept it?
4.Do you allege that you were ‘impecunious’ for any purpose relevant to the claim for credit hire charges? If so, please set out all relevant facts in support. In particular:
a.What is your occupation?
b.Please set out details of your total monthly income and the sources of the same
c.Please set out details of all your monthly outgoings
d.Please provide a list of all financial accounts held in your name at the time of hire, including (but not limited to) current accounts, savings accounts, credit card accounts, loan accounts and joint accounts. The list should specify the balance available on each account at the commencement of hire.
e.Please provide copy statements in respect of all financial accounts held in your name at the time of hire, covering the period of hire and 2 months
I believe that the facts stated above are true. I understand that proceedings for contempt of court may be brought against anyone who makes, or causes to be made, a false statement in a document verified by a statement of truth without an honest belief in its truth.