Credit Hire & Like for Like Replacement

The Credit Hire cases of Clark v The City of Edinburgh Council and Walker v Chesapeake Hillington Limited (see our Legal Updates) vindicate the approach we have been taking in credit hire cases.

In Clark, Lord Turnbull dealt with various issues arising from a hire through Accident Exchange but in particular set out his views on “like for like” replacement.  He refused to accept that a Pursuer whose own vehicle was a fourteen year old Toyota Celica worth just over £1,000 was entitled to recover from the Defenders the cost of a Honda Civic Type R GT valued at approximately £18,000 and with only 900 miles on the clock.  He said that amongst other things the age and value of the damaged car had to be taken into account.

In Walker, Sheriff Mitchell held that in a credit hire case the onus was showing that the Pursuer was impecunious and therefore entitled to recover the cost of a credit hire lay on the Pursuer.

This is a point of some significance as, over the last few months, we have been challenging the assertion by some Agents acting for Pursuers that they have no obligation to provide us with any information on whether or not the Pursuer was impecunious nor any obligation to aver this in the written pleadings in the Court Action.  On the basis of this Judgment the Pursuers have only to put some effort into actually proving that they were impecunious.