The false holiday compensation crisis, which is causing major division between the Spanish and British tourism and security authorities, is not just driven by the activities of "claims' farmers" in resorts.
While Jet2 has been praised by the Spanish and British tourism authorities for having deployed private detectives in key resorts along the Costas and here in the Balearics to try and spot and root out the so-called compensation touts who are trying to drum up false business, claims companies have also been cold calling Britons.
Yesterday, a Bulletin reader contacted the newsdesk to report a call he had received earlier in the day from a Manchester-based compensation claims company.
"I’ve still kept my UK mobile number so I guess they had no idea that I live here in Majorca. Anyway, the first thing they asked me was if I had been on an all-inclusive holiday over the past two years. I asked why and was passed over to her line manager who explained that, if I had suffered from food poisoning during the past 24 months, all I had to do was give them the name of the tour operator and they would proceed with a compensation claim. I enquired what happens if I hadn’t had food poisoning, and they put the phone down.
"I think this a total disgrace. Perhaps in the past the tour operators or hoteliers thought it was easier to pay than fight the claims, but now, as I’ve been reading, it’s reached such a level it is a serious problem. In short, that company was trying to convince me to committ a crime.
"It’s pure greed driven by solicitors and lawyers. It’s that ‘no win no fee’ mentality which has gradually gripped Britain and it has to be dealt with. These so-called legal practices need to be inspected and closed down, where necessary. It’s criminal."
This practice of cold calling (and indeed getting "victims" to call claims companies) involves some standard procedures as to how to make claims. One of these is to ensure that the "victim" doesn't mention anything about having eaten in a restaurant outside an all-inclusive hotel. All-inclusives are favoured for these claims because typically guests do not eat out, which therefore makes it much easier to allege that they are responsible for gastric or other complaints.
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