How to claim compensation from Roads Service
If you are involved in an accident and believe that Roads Service is responsible, you can make a claim for compensation. This page will answer some of the most commonly asked questions that arise when making a claim against Roads Service.
How do I make a claim?
Completing a claim form will assist Roads Service Claims Unit to process your claim as quickly as possible. You may download a claim form using the links below.
- Property damage compensation claims form (352 KB)
- Personal injury compensation form (319 KB)
- Vehicle damage compensation claim form (385 KB)
- Help with PDF files
Alternatively, you may request a claim form by email, by phone, in writing, or in person at either of our offices (addresses below).
You must sign the claim form and attach any relevant documentation to it before returning it to the Claims Unit. All forms should be returned to the main office in Belfast.
Roads Service Claims Unit
Roads Service Headquarters
10-18 Adelaide Street
Phone: 0300 200 7810
Fax: 028 9054 0665
Roads Service Claims Unit
Phone: 0300 200 7810
Fax: 028 7131 9719
When will I receive my compensation?
Compensation is not automatically guaranteed. Article 8 of the Roads (NI) Order 1993 allows you to claim compensation, but also provides the Department for Regional Development (DRD) with defences to such claims.
If Roads Service, on behalf of DRD, can show that it operated a reasonable system of inspection and repair of the road in question, you will not be entitled to compensation. This principle has long been accepted in courts throughout Northern Ireland. So, if your accident happened in spite of a system of regular inspection and prompt repair, then your claim will be rejected.
Similarly, if your accident was caused by a very small defect in the road, or by something sitting on the road (for example, rubbish or other debris), then Roads Service would again not be responsible for any damage caused.
As a result of this legislation, Roads Service must thoroughly investigate every claim to establish whether or not it has a defence to the allegation made.
How long will that investigation take?
The average timescale for a decision to be taken on vehicle damage claims is four months, and for personal injury claims six months.
For internal flooding of living accommodation, the target is six weeks. The average timescale for a decision on all other property damage claims is six months.
To investigate your claim thoroughly, Roads Service Claims Unit must check the following:
- inspection and repair records
- other records (for example, public complaints)
- whether or not a contractor or Service Authority is involved
These investigations can take some time, so your patience is appreciated.
Once your claim has been thoroughly investigated, a decision is taken to settle it, reject it or refer it to another party - for example, a contractor.
Why do you need to involve a contractor?
From investigations, it may be established that a contractor caused the defect in question. Any contractor employed by Roads Service indemnifies Roads Service against claims of this nature.
If Roads Service Claims Unit is satisfied that the contractor is responsible for the defect in question, the Unit will notify you and refer your claim to the contractor, because the contractor will be responsible for dealing with you directly about your claim.
Will I have to attend a meeting at the accident site?
Personal injury and vehicle damage only
It is essential that the exact location of an accident is identified, in order that your claim can be investigated thoroughly, fairly and quickly. Without a specific accident location, the claim cannot be investigated.
If you provide signed and dated photographs with your claim form which show the surrounding area and enable us to identify the exact location, then a meeting on site may not be necessary. However, if we cannot identity the exact location from the photographs, then a meeting will be arranged with a member of Roads Service staff to pinpoint the location.
Will someone inspect my damaged property?
A member of Roads Service staff or a loss adjuster may have to inspect the damage to your property. In some cases Roads Service Claims Unit will employ the services of a loss adjuster to advise about the financial aspects of a claim. If an inspection is required, they will contact you directly to arrange a suitable date and time to inspect the damage.
Such visits do not mean acceptance of liability by Road Service. They are intended to save time once the issue of liability has been decided.
What if my claim relates to the sewerage and water supply?
Northern Ireland Water Limited is responsible for the supply of water and sewerage services, and the company has its own claims handling procedures.
If your claim arises as a result of flooding or any other actions or operations taken by or on behalf of Northern Ireland Water, you should contact Waterline to request a claim form. Further information may be found at the “Flooding in your area” page.