Can I Make A Claim If Someone Causes An Accident By Undertaking?

This guide aims to answer the question: Is undertaking illegal? We’ll look at the rules and guidance on undertaking as stated in the Highway Code and clarify what the act is when driving on the road.

Is undertaking illegal

A guide looking at whether undertaking is illegal

Furthermore, we’ll help you understand whether you’re eligible to claim compensation. For example, if you sustained harm because another road user breached the duty of care they owed you, you could claim.

However, further details on eligible claims will be outlined further in this guide.

We understand you might be wondering how much compensation you could be owed for your injuries. If so, this guide will explain what your compensation might comprise and how it may be calculated.

Additionally, we’ll explore how changes to whiplash claims could affect the process you follow to seek compensation.

If you have any additional questions about claiming compensation for injuries in a car accident, get in touch with our team. You can reach us by:

  • Calling us on 0800 408 7825
  • Filling out our online contact form.
  • Chatting with an advisor using the live chat feature below.

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What Is Undertaking And Is Undertaking Illegal?

The definition of undertaking is when a road user undertakes slower-moving traffic on the left-hand side instead of on the right side. When a car passes on the right-hand side, this is called overtaking.

The manoeuvre is not deemed strictly illegal and there may be certain circumstances where the action is deemed acceptable.

For more information on whether undertaking is illegal, please continue reading our guide. Alternatively, please get in touch on the details below.

What Does The Highway Code Say About Undertaking?

According to Rule 268 in the Highway Code, road users shouldn’t overtake on the left-hand side or move to another lane on their left to overtake another road user.

Furthermore, Rule 268 states that in circumstances where there is congested traffic, it’s acceptable for traffic in left-hand lanes to keep up with the traffic in their lane even if this means passing traffic in the lane to their right.

Road users are advised not to weave in and out of lanes to overtake.

If you’re still unsure about whether undertaking is illegal in the UK, the next section could help.

Is Undertaking Illegal?

Many drivers are tempted to undertake for a variety of reasons. A road user may be frustrated by a middle lane road hogger and decide to undertake. However, this type of manoeuvre can be extremely dangerous and could result in causing a serious car accident.

If another driver has caused a car accident that resulted in you sustaining harm by undertaking, if they are deemed liable, you could make a road traffic accident claim. In doing so, you could seek compensation for the harm you sustained.

Furthermore, if the driver caused the accident by driving recklessly or dangerously, they could receive a fixed penalty notice which could include points on their licence. Depending on the seriousness of the accident they could be faced with criminal proceedings.

You may be able to seek compensation if another road user crashed into you when undertaking, and they caused you to sustain harm.

For more information, call our team. They can assess whether someone was responsible for the accident and whether you have a valid claim.

I Was Hit By Someone Undertaking, Do I Have A Claim?

You may have a valid road traffic accident claim if you can prove that another road user acted negligently. In order to prove this, you need to demonstrate that they:

  • Breached the duty of care they owed you
  • Caused you to sustain harm as a result.

There are various pieces of evidence you can provide in support of your claim, such as:

  • Dashcam footage
  • Pictures of your injuries
  • Witness contact details
  • Pictures of the accident scene

Additionally, you could provide medical evidence in the form of medical records that highlight the treatment and diagnosis you received. You may also be invited to attend a medical appointment that can produce a report on the current state and full extent of your injuries.

If you are unsure whether you have grounds to sue for compensation, a member of our team can help. They can assess whether another road user has breached their duty of care.

You can reach one of our friendly advisers by calling the number at the top of the page. A member of our team can advise you how to prove your claim.

Undertaking Accident Compensation Calculator

When you make a successful personal injury claim, your claim may comprise general and special damages.

You could be awarded general damages for your pain, suffering and loss of amenity. Secondly, you could receive special damages to reimburse your monetary losses incurred as a direct result of your injuries.

While it’s not possible for us to provide you with an exact amount, we can offer an idea on the compensation brackets.

We have used the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG) to create the table below. These example brackets give an idea of compensation amounts for physical and psychological injuries under general damages. They do not include special damages.

Injury Type Injury Severity Potential Compensation Award
Injury to the back (c) Minor: (i) Injuries might include less serious strains, sprains and soft tissue injuries that don’t require surgery to recover. The injuries may fully recover within 5 years. £7,410 to £11,730

Injury to a foot (g) Modest: Injuries might include a simple metatarsal fracture or puncture wound that causes ongoing symptoms. Up to £12,900
Injury to an ankle (c) Moderate: Injuries might include a fracture, ligamentous tear or other soft tissue injuries. £12,900 to £24,950
Injury to a Knee (b) Moderate: (i) An example injury might include a dislocation, torn cartilage or meniscus that causes various symptoms. £13,920 to £24,580
Injury to a leg (iv) Moderate: Injuries might include multiple or complicated fractures to one leg. £26,050 to £36,790
Injury to the neck (b) Moderate: (ii) Examples might include a soft tissue injury that results in movement being seriously limited and permanent pain that recurs. £12,900 to £23,460
Injury to a wrist (d) A fracture or soft tissue injury that has a longer recovery. Rarely exceed £9,620
Injury to a hand (g) A less serious injury to the hand that might include a severe crush injury that has an impact on function. £13,570 to £27,220
Injury to a elbow (b) A less severe elbow injury that doesn’t require major surgery and doesn’t result in a significant disability. £14,690 to £30,050
Injury to an arm (b) A serious fracture to both or one forearm that is permanent and results in a substantial disability. £36,770 to £56,180
Injury to a shoulder (e) Clavicle fracture. The award may depend on the extent of the fracture. £4,830 to £11,490
Injury to the head/brain damage (a) Very severe: The impact may result in the need for full- time nursing care. £264,650 to £379,100
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (a) Where the person experiences a permanent impact on their work and all other aspects of their life. £56,180 to £94,470

As mentioned above, you could receive special damages in a successful personal injury claim. They cover both past and future losses, provided you have evidence of any financial losses, such as:

  • Loss of earnings
  • Home and vehicle adaptations
  • Care costs
  • Travel expenses
  • Medical costs, such as for private costs unavailable on the NHS

If you’d like, a member of our team can offer a free valuation to provide an estimate of how much your claim may be worth. Get in touch on the number above for more information.

How Could The Whiplash Reform Programme 2021 Impact My Claim?

The Whiplash Reform Programme has introduced changes to the way claims for whiplash injuries sustained by passengers or drivers of vehicles over the age of 18 are made.

For instance, if your injuries are valued at £5,000 or less, you will make your claim through the government online portal.

However, if your injuries are valued at over £5,000 you could make your claim as normal.

There are certain road users who are exempt. This includes vulnerable road users such as cyclists, motorcyclists, pedestrians, mobility scooter riders, and sidecar passengers.

We have included the damages that may be awarded for whiplash injuries when claims are made through the government portal. The figures are taken from The Whiplash Injury Regulations 2021.

Length of time an injury lasted Compensation payout under
Regulation 2(1)(a)
Compensation payout under
Regulation 2(1)(b)
Less than three months £240 £260
More than three months, but not longer than six months £495 £520
More than six months, but not longer than nine months £840 £895
More than nine months, but not longer than twelve months £1,320 £1,390
More than twelve months, but not longer than fifteen months £2,040 £2,125
More than fifteen months, but not longer than eighteen months £3,005 £3,100
More than eighteen months, but not longer than twenty four months £4,215 £4,345


  • Regulation 2(1)(a): Amount paid for one or more whiplash injuries
  • Regulation 2(1)(b): Amount paid for one or more whiplash injuries and one or more minor psychological injuries.

Is Undertaking Illegal? Talk To Us About Road Traffic Accident Claims

Call us today and find out whether you have a valid claim. We can review your case and put you in touch with a solicitor from our panel. The solicitor who takes on your case could offer you No Win No Fee terms once they find you have grounds to sue.

All you have to do is sign and return the Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA) the solicitor sends you. This is a legal contract that sets out the Terms and Conditions of the agreement which includes:

  • A success fee is only payable when you win your claim and it’s taken out of the money you receive as a legally capped percentage.
  • When a claim is unsuccessful, you don’t pay a success fee.

Call us now to find out whether you have grounds to sue. A member of our team can review your case. They could put you in touch with a personal injury solicitor from our panel to represent you on a No Win No Fee basis. You can speak to one of our friendly advisers by:

  • Calling us on 0800 408 7825
  • Completing our online contact form
  • Speaking to an advisor via the live chat function below.

An adviser is here to answer any questions you have about making a personal injury claim. They will also answer provide further clarification on whether undertaking is illegal.

Road Traffic Accident Claims

We have provided some additional resources below, including some of our other guides you might find useful.

We hope this guide exploring whether the act of undertaking is illegal has helped. However, if you require more information, please get in touch with our team.