Avoiding Pitfalls in the Claims Process
A Pylon Case Study
A Pylon Case Study
At Thomson Broadbent, a crucial part of what we do is ensuring we cover every eventuality during the negotiation of a settlement.
The claims process involves reviewing all kinds of legal documents. Due to their complexity, there can be a pitfall in that hidden problems are overlooked, resulting in an unfair settlement.
Without using our professional knowledge and years of industry experience, you could be a victim of this pitfall and receive less than your settlement is worth. By taking advantage of our services, which includes forensically reviewing legal documents for you and identifying any hidden potential problems, you can avoid any pitfalls.
To demonstrate the benefit of using our expertise, we have looked back at one of the occasions where we maximised our client’s payment for pylon apparatus on their land, by identifying and resolving issues with their claim.
Thomson Broadbent were instructed to act on the behalf of a landowner in Dorset in relation to pylon apparatus on their land. In 2017, we negotiated a settlement upwards of £30,000 against National Grid PLC. After the settlement had been accepted and solicitors instructed, National Grid PLC then supplied evidence of a pre-existing Deed of Easement which would have nullified the negotiated settlement. This document was signed by a previous owner and gave National Grid PLC rights to keep their equipment in place across the full extent of the land.
Avoiding the Pitfall
The Distribution Network Operators (DNOs) who own the pylon apparatus often supply existing Deeds of Easement that cover the equipment on our client’s properties. These documents can be large and full of jargon which makes finding discrepancies difficult to the untrained eye. This is where Thomson Broadbent’s years of industry experience and expertise can help.
After National Grid PLC presented the Deed of Easement for our example case, we got to work on reviewing the documents and we found a discrepancy. There was a small parcel of land that had been purchased on a separate occasion. The land had oversailing cables and was not included within the original Deed of Easement. This meant our client would still be eligible for compensation. The client, who was supplied with a copy of the Deed of Easement noted he would not have spotted the error.
After bringing the discrepancy to National Grid PLC’s attention, a new £500 offer was suggested to reflect the small amendment needed to the document and cover a loss in ‘land use only’, as the rights concerning the residential property had already been signed over by a previous owner. However, the case developed further.
The Thomson Broadbent surveyor working on the case identified that the age he had suggested for the house during his valuation, did not predate the existing Deed. With some evidence supplied from the local planning authority, we were able to prove the residential property had not been an element of the original settlement and should therefore be included in the new settlement amount.
We are happy to report the original offer we negotiated of £30,000 was reinstated. Without our knowledge and expertise, our client would have ended up with a lower settlement.