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Claim under MIB’s Untraced Drivers Scheme subject to Qualified One Way Costs Shifting - Malcolm Johnson, BL Claims

10/09/17. In Howe v Motor Insurers’ Bureau [2017] EWCA Civ 932, Mr Howe was driving a lorry in France on the 30 March 2007 when a wheel detached from a lorry in front of him. The resulting accident left him paraplegic. Neither the other vehicle nor its driver was ever traced. He submitted a claim to the Motor Insurers Bureau and to its French equivalent, but after a time he was told by the French MIB that his claim was out of time. Consequently, he issued proceedings against the British MIB directly, seeking to enforce his rights under Regulation 13 of the Motor Vehicles (Compulsory Insurance) (Information Centre and Compensation Body) Regulations 2003 ("the Regulations"). That claim was struck out because it was out of time. The MIB now sought to recover their costs of defending the proceedings.

Mr Howe’s legal representatives answered the MIB’s claim for costs by saying that the proceedings against them came within CPR Part 44.13. This was a claim for damages for personal injury and consequently, it was eligible for the protection given by Qualified One-Way Costs Shifting ("QOCS"). The MIB’s costs order could not be enforced against him.

In the Court of Appeal, Lord Justice Lewison with whom McFarlane LJ and Munby LJ agreed, examined the...

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