Frequently Asked Questions About the Process of Personal Injury Claims and the Injury Board
How do I know if I can make a claim?
Your solicitor will advise whether or not you can pursue a particular claim. We provide you with a free assessment of your case. Before entering the claims process, it is important to note that all claims must have three essential features:
- Another person or organisation must have been negligent (at fault)
- The other person or organisation must have the means to pay a sum in damages (often through their liability insurers)
- In the Republic of Ireland, the accident must have occurred within the last two years for those aged 18 and over. For minors, under 18 a claim can be lodged within two years from their 18th birthday.
Note: If you were to blame for the accident it will not generally be possible to claim compensation.
If I am to claim, does the incident have to have happened in Ireland?
No. You can claim if the accident happened abroad if, for example, you were on a package holiday and injured in an apartment, hotel, plane or even at the airport.
Am I entitled to any compensation?
If you have suffered an injury or loss (including loss of earnings) because of the actions of another person you are probably entitled to compensation.
How much might my claim be worth?
Every case is different. The amount of compensation depends on a number of factors, including the extent of your injuries, loss of income, the costs that you suffered as a result of the accident and whether you were partly to blame. Further advice regarding the amount of money you are likely to get will be available from the solicitor dealing with your claim.
How long will it take before my case is settled?
This depends on how complicated your case is. Most cases are settled in a matter of months although some are settled in weeks. A few, very complicated, cases can take a year or more. The sooner you take action the better.
How often can I expect to receive an update on my claim?
This depends on the particular solicitor handling your case. Normally though you should receive a regular updates and progress reports on your claim.
What if I was partly to blame for the accident?
If you were partly to blame for the accident which caused your injury, illness or loss, you can still claim compensation if someone else was also to blame. However, your compensation may be reduced because you were also at fault. This is called “Contributory Negligence”.
What are damages?
This is another name for compensation paid to you because of your accident / injury / illness/ loss.
These are compensation for losses which are likely to continue into the future and where it is difficult to put a final figure on the losses. Some examples of general damages are compensation for loss of promotion or other opportunities, disadvantage in the labour market, pain and suffering, inability to carry out day to day tasks / hobbies, future loss of earnings etc.
This is compensation for money you have had to pay out or have lost because of the accident / injury / illness, and which you can put a figure on. Examples are money spent on travel, prescription fees, buying special equipment, damage to property, insurance excess etc.
How long will my claim take?
This is difficult to predict as many different factors are involved:
- If your claim is limited to property damage or minor injury it should be resolved in 4 or 5 months, or
- If, on the other hand, your claim involves contested liability, evidentiary difficulties, or serious injury it may require the police/garda report to be obtained, which can take some time, especially if its
release is delayed by criminal prosecutions.
- Injury claims can also be delayed if it is difficult for your doctors to agree on the effects, and you may
be advised to wait until you have recovered fully, before agreeing any compensation.
Will my claim be paid in full?
Responsibility for the accident has to be agreed, or decided by a Court, on the evidence, and your claim may be reduced by a proportion, or possibly rejected if the evidence is that you were wholly or partly responsible.
Injury Board FAQs
Who are the Injury Board ?
InjuriesBoard.ie, previously known as the Personal Injuries Assessment Board, is an independent statutory body, established in 2004 with the following aims:
- to assess how much compensation is due to an injured party;
- to reduce costs and fees involved in the administration of personal injury claims; and
- to reduce the amount of time it takes to finalise a claim for compensation.
InjuriesBoard.ie awards the same level of compensation as the Courts but within a faster time frame and without associated litigation costs. These costs are a major factor in the cost of Insurance premiums.
InjuriesBoard.ie handles personal injury claims relating to motor accidents, accidents in the workplace and claims involving Public Liability.
Who should apply to InjuriesBoard.ie?
Under the Personal Injuries Assessment Board Act 2003, anyone intending to seek compensation for a Personal Injury (other than a personal injury arising out of medical negligence) must make an Application to InjuriesBoard.ie, previously known as the Personal Injuries Assessment Board – usually through a solicitor.
Can Minors (those under the age of 18) make a claim?
Yes. Claims involving Minors must also be made to InjuriesBoard.ie. Because they are under the age of 18 the Minor must be represented by a “next friend” who will make the claim on their behalf. The “next friend” will usually be the parent or guardian of the minor.
InjuriesBoard.ie will make an assessment of a claim brought on behalf of a Minor in the normal manner. However a Court must approve any Assessment when it has been accepted by both parties before the Respondent can be directed to pay the amount involved.
What are General Damages?
General Damages cover compensation for pain and suffering resulting from injuries which you sustained in your accident.
What are Special Damages?
Special Damages are any expenses that you have incurred as a result of an accident. Special Damages cover areas such as loss of earnings, medical expenses, out of pocket expenses and vehicle damage costs. In serious cases there may also be future loss of earnings, future expenses etc.
Will I have to go for a medical examination?
The Claimant (the injured party) may have to attend a medical examination with an independent medical examiner. They will be notified if this is required. The cost of any independent examination will be paid for by the Respondent (the person or entity against whom a claim is made).
How long does it take to process a claim?
In the majority of cases we will issue an assessment of the claim within 9 months from the date the Respondent (the person or entity against whom a claim is made) agrees to the InjuriesBoard.ie process.
How long do I have to make a claim?
The normal timeframe within which you must make a claim is limited by law to two years from the date of the accident. There are exceptions to this for persons under 18 years of age and some other categories of cases. You are advised to submit your completed Application to InjuriesBoard.ie as soon as possible and well before the expiry of the two year period.
Is the compensation awarded taxable?
No. Compensation awarded by InjuriesBoard.ie is not subject to Income Tax.
Can I withdraw my Claim?
If you wish to withdraw your Claim from InjuriesBoard.ie you may do so. Legal advice should be sought before you withdraw your Claim. You should be aware that if you withdraw your Claim, you cannot resubmit the Claim again nor initiate the claim through the Court system. You must inform InjuriesBoard.ie in writing of your decision to withdraw your Claim.