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Making an Insurance Claim Against the Council

Advice before making a claim

Before entering a claim for compensation (sometimes known as a public liability claim) it is important to be aware of the following points:

  • All claims are assessed on the basis of whether the council has been legally at fault for the incident. Sometimes events occur that are unfortunate but not due to any parties' Negligence. There is no guarantee that entering a public liability claim will automatically result in compensation, and in many cases it does not.
  • A ‘Letter of claim’ may be entered by the claimant in person or by a solicitor acting on their behalf. We treat all claimants equally regardless of how they are represented
  • All claims are subject to data sharing for the identification and prevention of fraud. It is the councils policy that all fraudulent or exaggerated claims will be prosecuted

How to make a claim

Make and insurance claim directly using our online claims form

You can also make a public liability claim by sending a formal letter of claim to the council. It should contain enough information for the council to begin investigations. A ‘Letter of claim’ should contain the following details of the injured person or the owner of the damaged property:

1.    The name and address of the person making the claim

2.    Date of birth

3.    National insurance number – if the claim is for an injury

4.    Details of the incident

5.    Details of any injuries or damage to property

6.    Details of how or why the claimant feels the council have acted negligently

The Letter of claim should be sent to:
The Insurance Officer, c/o Finance, Ashford Borough, Council Civic Centre, Ashford, Kent, TN23 1PL

It may also be emailed to us.

By providing as much information about the location and the details of the incident, and using fixed permanent points of reference, it will help us identify the location and aid our investigations. Please ensure photographs of the location, the alleged defect and subsequent injury or damage are supplied with the letter of claim.

The more information we have the quicker any investigation may be.

When can a response be expected

This will depend upon when and how the claim is initially submitted to us, or our insurers. However, it is possible that it may be acknowledged in as little as 24 hours. We will then endeavour to conclude all claims as promptly as possible.

Legal advice

A public liability claim is a legal process. It may sometimes be complicated and use unfamiliar language, or words that are not commonly used. You may wish to seek legal advice either before making a claim, or during the claim process. Before appointing a solicitor or other legal representative, please ensure that you are aware of the possible costs involved and that you are comfortable with the advice given. The Citizens Advice Bureau may be able to give guidance on making a public liability claim.