Personal Injuries Claim Process
Important: This step-by-step guide is for informational purposes only. If you have an injury claim case for compensation contact Margaret O’Flaherty below for expert help to determine if you have a valid case.
To enquire about bringing a claim for injury compensation , contact Margaret O’Flaherty, publisher of Lawyer.ie & Principal of Tyrrell Solicitors.
To arrange a consultation by phone or in person, contact her using the enquiry form or call (01)6671476.
1. Never settle before seeking legal and medical advice
Personal Injuries can arise from:
- Workplace accidents
- Road Traffic accident, either in a car, being a cyclist or a pedestrian
- Accidents in a public place
- Medical negligence
Suffering from a personal injury can have a detrimental effect on your life.
Your pain and suffering may be ignored by insurance companies if and when they directly approach you within days after an accident to reach a quick settlement.
At this time you may have not had an opportunity to garnish a medical report or know what your future prognosis is in relation to your injuries, you more than likely will not have had the benefit of any legal advice..
You may not be fully aware of your legal rights and entitlements. Settling at this time may not be in your best interest and you should seek legal and medical advice to ensure you have the best chance of receiving appropriate compensation for your current and future needs as a result of the injuries you have suffered.
2. Time waits for no person
The first step to consider is if you are within the time limit to bring a personal injuries claim? You have two years from the date of the accident or the date you are aware that there was a connection between the injuries and the matters you believe to have caused the injuries. The Personal Injuries Assessment Board aka PIAB and the courts are the two routes you can recover compensation for the personal injuries you have suffered.
3. The Personal Injuries Assessment Board
The Personal Injuries Assessment Board is the first route that you must follow when seeking compensation for your personal injuries.
It is a statutory body which provides independent assessment of personal injury compensation for victims of workplace, motor and public liability accidents. It does not cover psychological injury or assess personal injury claims that are the result of medical negligence.
3. Letter before going to PIAB
Within two months of the accident or as soon as practicable thereafter write a letter to the person you believe caused the injury setting out the type of accident and the cause of action and send it by registered post.
IMPORTANT: Before you apply to the Injuries Board you should read this article on Lawyer.ie on why having a solicitor to represent you can work to your advantage.
4. PIAB Application
(a) Get a medical assessment form (Form B) completed by your doctor.
(b) Fill in the application form
(c) Send in all your receipts for any financial loss you may have incurred.
(d) If you have had correspondence with the person you hold responsible for your injuries include copy correspondence.
(e) Pay the €45.00 application fee, this can be done online
(f) Please note that you can fill out a paper Form A, however the fee for a paper application is now €90.00, therefore it is advisable to upload your claim online.
When they receive your application and supporting documentation they will write to you acknowledging this and confirm your application number.
5. Injury Claim Assessment
The Injuries Board will only assess a claim for compensation if the other party consents to be assessed by them.
They then write to the other party or parties (the respondent/s) who has 90 days to consent or decline to submit to the agency process. Failure to respond is deemed consent.
If after 90 days the other party declines to have the claim assessed by the Personal Injury Assessment Board, then the agency will issue an authorisation. At this stage you can instruct Tyrrell Solicitors to commence court proceedings on your behalf.
6. Medical Assessment
Let’s assume the other party does not dispute liability and consents to the assessment. If the Personal Injuries Assessment Board do not assess your claim within nine months they have the authority to extend the time to fifteen months in which to assess the claim.
Claims are assessed using all the medical evidence. Occasionally they have been known to accept your doctor’s medical report when making their award. Where the Board obtains its own report, it relies on this when making its award. They also have regard to the level of compensation awarded for particular injuries (see guidelines here )
7. Out of pocket expenses
You will also receive a sum for out of pocket expenses which can consist of doctor’s fees, physiotherapy fees, medication and medical appliances, past and future loss of earnings.
It is important to be aware that if the Board fail to inform you before nine months has passed that they intend to extend the time and you have received no notification that an extension has been sought, then you are entitled to go to court immediately.
8. Time limit to accept or reject the award for you and the other side
Once the award is decided by the Board it is communicated to you and the other party.
You have 28 days to accept or reject the award and if you do not reply to the Board you are deemed to reject the award.
The other party has 21 days to accept or reject the award and if it does not reply to the Board it is deemed to accept the award.
9. Effect of accepting the award
If you and the other party accept the award, the claim is settled and an Order to Pay is provided to the other party. This document, which is copied to you, has the same effect as a court Order and proceedings may be issued on foot of it, in the event of non-payment.
10. Effect of rejecting the award
If you or the other party rejects or is deemed to reject the award, then you are entitled to go to court immediately. If you are not happy with your assessment you can instruct Tyrrell solicitors to commence court proceedings on your behalf.
If you wish to speak to a solicitor regarding this issue, use the contact options below.