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Electric scooters, also known as e-scooters, are becoming increasingly common on our roads. Their size, cost and convenience as a means of light, motorised transportation means that they are often used on paths and pavements too.

E-scooters are classified as motor vehicles and can only legally be used in public places through the various e-scooter rental schemes currently being trialled in various locations across the UK.  Under the current law, it is illegal to use a privately owned e-scooter on any road, pavement, path, park or other public space. Most of the e-scooters on our roads are therefore unregulated and uninsured. Unlawful use of a private e-scooter can lead to fines and other penalties from criminal prosecution.

Accidents involving e-scooters are a rising cause of death and serious injury for their riders, other road users and pedestrians. In the UK, in 2021 alone, e-scooter accidents caused over 900 casualties. 40% of those involved head injury and other serious injuries, and 12 resulted in death.

Where someone is injured or killed in an e-scooter accident, as a result of the negligence of the rider or someone else, such as another driver, the injured person or their bereaved family may be entitled to compensation.

Claims involving e-scooters are complex and should be handled by specialist solicitors to ensure that, whatever the circumstances, the injured person obtains their full entitlement to compensation.

Are e-scooters legal in the UK?

E-scooters can legally be rented, or sold and bought in the UK. Currently, they can only be used legally in a few specified ways. Different rules apply for e-scooters used under approved trial rental e-scooter schemes or for privately owned e-scooters.

The government has indicated that it intends to bring in a new Transport Bill later in 2022 which will create ‘powered personal transporters’ as a new category of vehicle.  If that happens, e-scooters may be legalised, subject to new regulations for how, where and under what conditions they can legally be used.

Until the law changes, e-scooters are classed as motor vehicles, like cars, motorbikes and vans, and are subject to the same rules of the road and criminal penalties when those rules are broken. In practise, these rules mean that the only e-scooters which can legally be used on public roads are rental scheme e-scooters. The legal use of rental scheme e-scooters is strictly regulated and restricted to specific places.

E-scooters used on private land with the permission of the land-owner

The law allows the use of rental or private e-scooters on private land if the rider has the permission of the land-owner.

Rental e-scooters

The only type of e-scooters that are legal to use on public roads or in other public spaces are e-scooters which are rented under an approved UK trial rental e-scooter scheme.  The person renting the e-scooter must be at least 16 years old and have the correct driving licence and an account with the rental company.

The rental scooter can legally be used on private land with the land-owner’s permission or on a public road or cycle lane within the specific area approved by the rental e-scooter scheme. The rental e-scooter’s rider must have motor insurance (usually provided by the e-scooter rental provider) and must comply with road traffic laws and regulations.  

E-scooter riders can be fined, receive penalty points on their licence and be prosecuted for committing criminal offenses such as riding the e-scooter:

  • without the correct licence;
  • without motor insurance;
  • whilst on a mobile phone;
  • whilst under the influence of alcohol or drugs;
  • whilst using a mobile phone ;
  • on the pavement;
  • through red lights;
  • over the maximum speed limit for e-scooters which is around 15mph in most rental e-scooter trial areas but can be lower.

If someone is injured by an e-scooter, the accident will be investigated by the police in the same way that it would be if the accident had been caused by the driver of a car or other motor vehicle. 

The police may seize the e-scooter if it is ridden illegally or in an antisocial way.

Use of helmets and other protective or high visibility clothing are not compulsory whilst legally riding e-scooters under the current rules but are recommended. This is for the rider’s safety and also to ensure the e-scooter is visible to other road users.

If you have been injured in an e-scooter accident caused wholly or partly by someone else’s negligence, you can contact us here to find out more about your right to claim compensation.

Private e-scooters

Privately owned e-scooters can be used on private land if the e-scooter rider has the land-owner’s permission. It is against the law to use a privately owned e-scooter in any other way. Riding a private e-scooter illegally, such as on public roads or in public spaces, can lead to the rider being fined or receiving other penalties, such as points on their driving licence, or having the scooter seized or impounded.

E-scooters are classed as motor vehicles. Motor vehicles, such as cars, vans and motorbikes must have motor insurance. Currently, it is not possible to get motor insurance for privately owned e-scooters. This means that it is against the law to use a private e-scooter on the road or in public spaces.

If someone is injured by a private e-scooter, the accident will be investigated by the police in the same way that it would be if the accident had been caused by the driver of any other motor vehicle. Additionally, the rider of the e-scooter may also face criminal prosecution and penalties for riding a motor vehicle illegally and without insurance. 

If you have been injured in an e-scooter accident caused wholly or partly by someone else’s negligence, you can contact us here to find out more about your right to claim compensation.

Who can make an e-scooter injury claim?

If you have suffered serious injury in an e-scooter accident that was wholly or partly caused by someone else’s negligence you may be entitled to substantial compensation.

We can obtain compensation for:

  • the rider of an e-scooter who was injured as a result of negligence by the driver of another vehicle;
  • the rider of an e-scooter who was injured as a result of the negligence of the highway authority or council;
  • a pedestrian who was injured as a result of an e-scooter rider’s negligence;
  • a cyclist who was injured as a result of an e-scooter rider’s negligence;
  • a motorcyclist or pillion passenger who was injured as a result of an e-scooter rider’s negligence;
  • a driver or passenger in a car, van or other motorised vehicle who was injured as a result of an e-scooter rider’s negligence.

E-scooter accident claims require specialist solicitors who can advise you about how complex issues, such as uninsured riders, multiple or partial causes of the accident and severe or life-changing injuries affect your claim. We recommend that you contact our experienced solicitors who will be happy to advise you, free and confidentially, about your own entitlement to compensation.

Who pays the injured person’s compensation in an e-scooter injury claim?

If someone is injured whilst riding an e-scooter as a result of another driver’s negligence, the driver’s motor insurance company are responsible for paying compensation to anyone who was injured by their driver’s negligence.

If someone is injured whilst riding an e-scooter as a result of negligence of the highway authority or council, similarly their insurers will be responsible for paying compensation in any personal injury claim.

If a pedestrian or other road user is injured as a result of a rental e-scooter rider’s negligence, the rental e-scooter rider’s motor insurers will be responsible for paying compensation for injuries caused by their insured rider’s negligence.

Until the law changes, private e-scooters cannot be insured. Pedestrians or other road users who were injured as a result of a private e-scooter rider’s negligence may still be able to claim compensation from the Motor Insurers’ Bureau (MIB)

Injury claims involving e-scooter accidents can be complex. We advise each client based on the individual circumstances of their accident. Contact us here to talk to one of our experienced personal injury solicitors, free and confidentially, to find out more about how we can help you make a claim.

What kind of injuries lead to e-scooter compensation claims?

Research by PACTS and The Road Safety Trust, based on reported casualties from accidents involving e-scooters in 2021, identified that e-scooter accidents often result in head, facial and severe or fatal injuries. This is due to a combination of the rider’s upright position and the e-scooter’s design which affects its stability when it meets changes in the road surface and when accelerating or braking.

Our specialist brain injury and major trauma have helped countless clients rehabilitate and recover compensation after road accidents have resulted in:

  • head injury;
  • brain injury;
  • skull fracture;
  • spinal injury;
  • major trauma and multiple injuries;
  • loss of limbs or amputation;
  • facial injuries;
  • severe or multiple fractures (broken bones);
  • degloving injuries (needing skin-grafting);
  • scarring and disfigurement;
  • CRPS/chronic pain;
  • severe psychological injury, such as PTSD;
  • fatal injury (death).

Who can we help make a personal injury claim?

If I make a claim for compensation, will I need to go to court?

How long do personal injury compensation claims take?

What compensation can I claim for serious injury?

What is an interim payment?

How do I get started with making a claim?

How are personal injury claims funded?

What injuries can lead to a personal injury compensation claim?

What is a personal injury claim?

What are the time limits for making a personal injury claim?

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 Thank you for all your hard work on behalf of myself and my family. You were recommended to us by a close friend back in 2017 and I will certainly recommend you again. You’ve been amazing and very reassuring considering how complicated I made things at times. It’s been one of the hardest times of my life but I was glad I had you on the end of the phone. It’s a surreal feeling now it’s all over but very relieved you got us the best outcome and I can’t thank you enough.

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Through my dealings with Claire as my representative in a personal injury claim, I have been extremely grateful for her professionalism and attention to detail. 

I believe going above and beyond to help accommodate my needs and explain everything in a way that I could understand. Working around timing for video calls and zoom meetings with myself and my mum, often on weekends and evenings. We always knew she was just a phone call away to answer any questions we had and if she didn’t have the answer then it would be found out for us. Once the claim was settled, she has still offered her support and provided contacts to do with my injury fund and further surgery I need. 

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After being involved in a Road Accident I enlisted the services of Boyes Turner to help settle our compensation claim for damages and ongoing injuries that I incurred as a result. I cannot recommend them highly enough. Their ongoing support throughout an extremely stressful ordeal was second to none. I suffered multiple injuries and they organised all my ongoing medical needs both physically and mentally, to help aid my recovery and rehabilitation. They managed my case with the utmost professionalism, concluding it satisfactorily so that I can move forward with my life and recovery. Thank you to Claire and her team for their amazing ongoing support and work with handling my case, in a time of great stress and uncertainty. Thank you so much for all you have done for me and my family.

 

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