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Have you been involved in an accident abroad which has resulted in injury? You may be wondering what the next steps will be to try and seek compensation? We have put together a brief guide to advise if you may be able to seek recompense against a foreign defender.

Road traffic accidents

It is well known that in terms of the EU Motor Directives that if you have a car accident anywhere in the EU, you are entitled to sue the insurer of the vehicle involved in your accident in Scotland under the terms of Regulation (EU)1215/2012.

Other kinds of accidents

Where you have an accident abroad (other than a car accident) an where the law of the country where the accident occurred recognises a direct right of action against insurers, then you can sue the insurer of whoever was responsible for your accident in Scotland under the terms of Article 11(1)(b) of the above Regulation.

Anchor defender

If you have a right to sue one defender (the "anchor" defender) in Scotland (for example, the travel agent in a package holiday claim), then you are entitled to bring in the owners of the hotel as a co-defender even if they are based abroad, provided they are based in the EU, or are based in a country which is a signatory to the Lugano Convention of 2007 (Article 8). You can also bring their own insurers as well in the situation set out above. There has been a recent court case which says that even if the only purpose of raising an action against a UK based person or company is just for bringing in foreign co-defenders, then this is permitted. The case is PJSC Commercial Bank Privatbank v Kolomoisky and Others (2019) EWCA CIV 1708. So, in a package holiday claim, you can sue the travel agent or tour operator provided they are based in the UK and then bring in any relevant foreign defenders on the back of this. 

Which EU countries allow a direct right of action 

The following countries allow this:-

  • Spain
  • France
  • Denmark
  • Belgium

How we can help

If you have been involved in an accident abroad, and think you may have a claim, you can contact us by completing our online enquiry form, or call us on 0800 988 8082.

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