What is Personal Injury?
Personal injury is a legal term used to describe an injury to an individual. There are many situations where Personal Injuries occur such as, in work, while driving, or even just while walking. Or there may also be injury due to faulty or defective products you have used.
How a Personal Injury Affects Your Life
Any sort of injury can have a major impact on your life. You may be unable to work, and this will affect your income. You may need to pay for a range of medical expenses such as surgery and medication.
Making Personal Injury Claims
How long it takes for a Personal Injury Claim to be assessed, depends on several factors. The type of injury will be key. Injuries can be quite minor in their impact and some are life changing. The more serious the injury, the more complex the process is. More experts’ opinions are needed before your claim can be weighed up.
Main Types of Personal Injury Claims
Every injury is unique. However, there are broad areas which claims will come under and these include:
How To Make Personal Injury Claims
In Ireland, the Personal Injuries Board Ireland assesses all claims. You can make a claim directly to the board, or you can consult Thomasina Connell Solicitors first about your claim.
Making the claim yourself means you must be aware of the statue of limitations that is running against your claim. If you have any hesitation, you should seek legal advice.
A solicitor can submit your application and liaise with the Personal Injuries Board about your claim. Your solicitor can advise on any legal issues which may arise and seek expert opinion when required. This will increase the likelihood of your claim’s success.
After the board receives all required documents, they will make their assessment. Then they consult you to ask if you are happy with the assessment. If you not, then your solicitor will be provided with what is known as an Authorisation. The claim must then go forward to the relevant court.
It is your choice whether to proceed or not to the civil courts. You should discuss this with your solicitor
Is There a Time Limit on Personal Injury Claims
Normally, the time limit for making a claim is two years. Exceptions to the two-year rule include the following people:
- People who are victims of an intentional assault may well have 6 years in which to bring their claim.
- People who suffered from a “legal disability” when they were injured, such as those then under 18 years of age
- People with no knowledge of their injury – until they discover they have been injured through someone else’s fault.
The situation for children is different. A child cannot bring a claim forward by themselves. It must be brought on behalf of a child by what the law calls a ‘next friend’ (family). Once a child turns 18, the 2-year time limit will commence.
Time is of the essence. A delay in bringing a claim, can defeat your claim. The earlier a claim is submitted, the easier it is to recall.
Recovering Costs Incurred in Personal Injury Claims
You may incur costs yourself in the process of making personal injury claims. These costs are described as special damages and may be claimed as well. They normally include the following:
- Medical costs – Such as diagnostic procedures like X-rays and MRI scans, and treatment such as surgery, medication, rehabilitation therapy, or physiotherapy.
- Travel costs – any travel expenses directly related to your accident, cost of taxis, public transport to and from hospital or car parking are all recoverable.
- Loss of Earnings – a calculation will be made to work out how much money you have lost as a result of being out of work, and any future loss of income, as a result of the injury. These figures will be included in the final award amount.
Above, we have outlined just some of the issues involved in making personal injury claims. But each case is different, and we recommend you get legal advice to discuss the specifics of your case. For information or to book an appointment, just call Thomasina on 057 866 2050 or email: email@example.com
“In contentious business, a solicitor may not calculate fees or other charges as a percentage or a proportion of any award or settlement.”
The cost of taking a Personal Injuries claim will always vary and is dependent on a number of factors, including the complexity of your case and the time taken to bring it to a conclusion. We will be happy to provide an estimate of fees once we have spoken with you and reviewed your case.
It is important to note that solicitor’s fees may not be calculated as a percentage of any award or settlement you receive. Any fees charged will be on the basis of the work undertaken by your Solicitor in undertaking work on your case.
The concept of the ‘no win, no fee’ fee arrangement is a common one amongst Solicitors in Ireland. This can often be known as a ‘no foal, no fee’ arrangement. This means no legal charges apply should your case not be successful. On the other hand, if your case is successful either by way of settlement outside of court or in front of a judge in court, then legal fees will apply. Solicitors can enter into no win no fee agreements with clients; however, they are strictly prohibited from advertising no win no fee services.
This is the most common question our clients ask us. More often than not, it can be a difficult one to answer at the early stages of the process as there are so many varying factors to take into account. It can be useful to review ‘The Book of Quantum’ utilised by The Injuries Board which sets out the range of compensation payable for all kinds of injuries
Most Personal Injury cases are settled within 18 – 24 months of commencement however this can vary depending on the complexity of your case. If the person responsible for your injuries does not accept liability for your accident it can take longer.
Most compensation claims are lodged in the Injuries Board seeking an assessment of the award payable to you. Once your claim is lodge the defendant has up to 90 days to respond to your application.
The Injuries Board process can result in award of compensation. It is essential to have a Solicitors advice in making your decision about whether to accept or decline that compensation award.