Unite the Union member victim of claims management ‘cowboys’13 February 2014
Unite Legal Services step in when high street law firms failed
Thompsons Solicitors is representing a member of Unite the Union in a claim against two high street solicitors’ firms after he was repeatedly let down by law firms acting for a claims management company.
The former employee of Northern Foods responded to a radio ad by a claims management company offering to investigate cases of industrial deafness.
The 75-year-old from Nottingham had worked in a confined kitchen using industrial machinery for 17 years without having any protection for his ears and had noticed deterioration in his hearing.
The claims management company visited the Unite the Union member at his home in 2008 to carry out an initial hearing test. His case was referred to one firm, which went bust and then by another which, although it issued court proceedings, ultimately had those proceedings struck because they failed to comply with two Court orders.
In March 2013 the pensioner and retired member of Unite the Union contacted his union for legal advice. Unite Legal Services put him in touch with Thompsons Solicitors who are currently pursuing a professional negligence claim against the solicitors.
The Unite the Union member said: “I’m very grateful to finally have the backing of a well-established solicitors firm with the reputation of Thompsons. I had no idea that claims companies were just a front for law firms who from my experience don’t know what they’re doing.
“When I found out my claim had been struck out because the solicitors representing me had failed to respond to Court orders I was horrified. I’m looking forward to putting an end to this saga and only wish I had contacted Unite the Union earlier to avoid the stress and upset of the last six years.”
Scourge of claims management firms
Annmarie Kilcline from Unite the Union, said: “Aggressive advertising by claims management firms traps people who don’t know what to expect from law firms and end up with a poor service and getting ripped off.
“If our member had contacted Unite Legal Services in the first instance he would have been dealt with by solicitors who are experts in their field. Instead he was strung along by inept legal firms and nearly lost out on compensation. I’m glad we have managed to find someone to pay up.”
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