XII. Do not engage recovery agents to handle your claims
Recovery agents are neither professionally qualified nor subject to any code of professional conduct. A recovery agent will finance the claim by paying the legal fees and other disbursements, and then the accident victim has to hand over a share of his compensation to the recovery agent.
There is no compulsory insurance covering any claims directed at recovery agents and they are of unknown financial backing. Since accident compensation in Hong Kong is assessed on the basis of actual loss, victims using recovery agents will not be adequately compensated as part of their compensation has to be paid to the recovery agents. The more seriously injured victims may then not have sufficient means to maintain their livelihood.
Recovery agency contracts are generally champertous in nature and are unenforceable. Maintenance (of which champerty is a more serious form) remains a criminal offence in Hong Kong and recovery agents are liable to be prosecuted. Accident victims relying on recovery agents are likely to jeopardize their chances of getting the best possible redress. Accident victims should approach solicitors or the Legal Aid Department directly.
It is important that you seek the services of a qualified, reputable and specialist firm of solicitors that have a strong background in the area of personal injury litigation. Such a firm should be able to provide you with expert advice on whether you are qualified to make a claim, and how to collate and present the supporting documentation. They will start the claim for compensation for you by acting on your behalf if they believe you have a strong case.