The Injuries Board

Have you suffered a personal injury in Ireland? If so, you may be entitled to compensation. In order to make a claim for compensation in respect of a personal injury that you have suffered you will need to make an application to the Injuries Board (the Irish Government body which makes personal injury awards).

The average Injuries Board award in 2014 was €22,642 with the largest award being €972,898. Approximately three out of four applications submitted to the Injuries Board related to motor accidents.

What can you be compensated for?

  • personal injuries;
  • psychological injuries;
  • loss of income or opportunity; and
  • any other out of pocket expenses suffered in relation to the incident.

For more information on making an application for compensation to the Injuries Board please contact us  and we will be happy to help you prepare and submit your application.

Road Traffic Accidents

Have you or a member of your family been involved in a road traffic accident that was not your fault? Have you been hurt or injured as a result of the accident? If so we can help you obtain the compensation you deserve.

What are you entitled to make a claim for?

  • personal injuries;
  • psychological injuries;
  • loss of income or opportunity; and
  • any other out of pocket expenses suffered in relation to the incident.

Steps to take immediately following a road traffic accident:

  1. take as many details as possible (i.e. the driver’s name, address, vehicle registration number, insurance company name & policy number);
  2. take photographs of the scene of the accident, where possible;
  3. take the names and addresses of any witnesses to the accident;
  4. if there are any injuries at the scene of the accident the Gardai will need to attend;
  5. even where the Gardai do not attend the scene of the accident you should report the accident to your local Garda Station as soon as possible; and
  6. seek medical attention for any injuries sustained.

Accidents at Work

Employers have a special duty of care to their employees. They must, at all times, ensure a safe place of work and provide employees with the appropriate training to enable them to carry out their work safely. If you have been involved in an accident at your place of work, you may  be entitled to compensation.

What are you entitled to make a claim for?

  • personal injuries;
  • psychological injuries;
  • loss of income or opportunity; and
  • any other out of pocket expenses suffered in relation to the incident.

Steps to take immediately following an accident in the workplace:

  1. immediately notify your employer;
  2. record as much information as you reasonably can in relation to the accident including, where possible, phtotographs of the scene of the accident; and
  3. seek the appropriate medical attention.

Accidents in a Public Place

Have you suffered an injury, that was not your fault:

  • on a footpath;
  • in a public park;
  • in a public playground;
  • in a shop, public house or leisure centre;
  • on any other public space?

If so, you may be entitled to compensation.

What are you entitled to make a claim for?

  • personal injuries;
  • psychological injuries;
  • loss of income or opportunity; and
  • any other out of pocket expenses suffered in relation to the incident.

Steps to take immediately following an accident in a public place:

  1. record details of the accident;
  2. take photographs of the scene of the accident;
  3. take the names and addresses of any witnesses to the accident; and
  4. notify a person in charge, if any.

Workplace Bullying and Harassment

Bullying at work or an incident of sexual harassment can be a series of actions or a one-off incident.

Bullying or harassment of any kind can give rise to a claim for compensation.

Your employer must, at all times, provide you with a safe place of work and your employer should have procedures in place to deal with any incidents of bullying or harassment.

What are you entitled to make a claim for?

  • personal injuries;
  • psychological injuries;
  • loss of income or opportunity; and
  • any other out of pocket expenses suffered in relation to the incident.

RECENT CASES / DEVELOPMENTS

Update: April 2016

Personal Injuries – 14ft Fall From Scaffolding – Severe Soft Tissue Injuries to Neck, Shoulder, Hip and Leg – Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and Depression – €323,481.50 

The injured party in this case was employed by the defendants as a general handyman and was engaged in cutting ivy from the defendants’ property. The injured party fell 14 foot while moving from a ladder to scaffolding. The injured party suffered severe soft tissue injuries to his neck, shoulder, hip, lower back and now walks with a limp and uses a crutch. The injured party also claimed to be suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and depression. The Defendant claimed that there was no structural damage to the injured party’s spine and that his injuries were psychosomatic.

The High Court held that the Injured Party’s pain is genuine and that he will never be able to return to heavy work but will, in time, be fit for light work. The High Court also accepted that injured party is suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and depression. The injured party was awarded damages of€323,481.50.

For more information see: Ruffley, Martin v Cathal Ryan and Danielle Ryan trading as LaLa Investments


Personal Injuries – Minor Accident – Injuries to Neck and Lumbar Region – Psychological Reaction to Minor Injuries – €100,000 

The injured party in this case was a passenger in a car that was struck from behind by another vehicle causing a minor impact. The injured party claimed for damages arising from injuries sustained to her neck and also to her lumbar region. The Defendant denied that the injured party suffered any appreciable injury and claimed that the injured party was grossly exaggerating her claim. The injured party had previously injured her lower back due to a fall at home in 2009. The injured party claimed that she had suffered a psychological reaction to the minor physical injuries sustained and that she had not worked since the date of the incident.

The High Court held that the injured party had suffered a minor injury to an already vulnerable back. The High Court held that “catastrophisation” had led to the injured party’s life being dominated by the accident and her perception of her injuries.  The injured party was awarded €100,000 in total.

For more information see: Plonka, Katarzyna v Ainars Norviss


Update: January 2016

Personal Injuries – Workplace – Repetitive strain – meat production operative – €415,000

Plaintiff claimed damages for personal injuries allegedly suffered while employed as a butcher / slaughter hall operative in the Defendant’s factory.

Plaintiff complained about back pain in June 2005 and was moved to a different section of the production line.

In 2007 the Plaintiff again complained of injuries to his back and was diagnosed with disc prolapse and sciatica.

Question which arose for consideration was whether the system of work was unsafe.

The system of work changed after 2007 and the system of work now in place does not involve a twisting and turning manoeuvre.

The Plaintiff claimed that the system changed because of his accident and the Defendant claimed the change was made for operational reasons.

Held, the Defendant failed to properly train the Plaintiff as to correct posture to avoid back strain, award of loss of earnings to date €65,000, €100,000 for future loss of earnings, €175,000 for general damages to date, €75,000 for future damages. Total Award: €415,000.

For more information see: Saleh, Mohammed Ali v Moyvalley Meats (Ireland) Ltd


Personal Injuries – Damages – Post traumatic stress suffered by child with pre-existing intellectual disability following house fire 

Plaintiff sued for damages for personal injuries sustained following a fire involving a Hotpoint dishwasher which occurred in his home in 2010.

When family returned to their home after the fire, the Plaintiff suffered from anxiety, nightmares and obsessive compulsive behavior. The plaintiff had pre-existing mild intellectual disability and was vulnerable.

Held, The Plaintiff was a particularly vulnerable individual due his to pre-existing intellectual disability. The Plaintiff suffered psychological injuries as result of the fire. Compensatory damages for past suffering awarded, €35,000, future suffering €15,000, special damages €1,244. Total damages: €51,244. 

For more information see: Monds, Aaron (a minor suing by his father Henry Monds) v Indesit Company UK Ltd


Personal Injuries – workplace

Plaintiff claimed damages against the Defendant in respect of injury to her lumbar spine as a result of lifting a 13kg box from floor level to above shoulder height.

Question which arose for consideration was whether adequate manual handling training had been given to the Plaintiff.

Held, liability rested with the Defendant, the Plaintiff was given inadequate training with no proper follow-up and supervision, no risk assessment carried out in relation to lifting duties of the Plaintiff. The plaintiff could not be faulted for failing to ask for assistance. Damages of €85,255 awarded.

For more information see: Meus, Justyna v Dunnes Stores


Personal Injuries – workplace accident 

Plaintiff claimed damages for personal injuries to his arm allegedly sustained from an electric shock at his workplace while using a cardboard compactor and baling machine.

Plaintiff claimed numbness in his arm. Medical evidence on behalf of the plaintiff indicated a moderate injury to median nerve of wrist and ulnar nerve of the elbow, medical evidence on behalf of the Defendant suggested that plaintiff’s complaints were not consistent with anatomic pattern of nerves.

Machine examined and found to be in full working order and was properly maintained but risk of occurrence of stray voltage had not been eliminated by installation of extra low voltage in the control device.

Held, Defendant should have reviewed the suitability of machinery which was over 10 years old to ensure that employees are exposed to minimum risks necessary in undertaking their jobs, by failing to install ELV in the control device the defendant failed in its obligations to the plaintiff.

General damages: €40,000, special damages in relation to net loss of earnings, €7,500.

For more information see: Watters, Gerard v Dunnes Stores

Phone: (01) 561 7900
12 Thorncastle Street, Ringsend, Dublin 4, D04 W2K2
info@corcoransolicitors.com