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, even just walking. Or there may also be injury due to faulty or defective products you have used.
How Can a Personal Injury Affect Your Life?
An injury of any kind can affect your quality of life. Being out of work as a result of a personal injury can affect the family income. There can also be medical costs including consultations, surgery, medication and rehabilitation.
Personal Injury Claims
Personal injury claims depend on the type of injury suffered. Some injuries are relatively minor, some are more difficult to quantify, and some are life changing.
All of these affects how long it can take to have your claim assessed. The more serious the injury, the more experts’ opinions are required before the injured parties claim can be measured. This is just a snapshot of how a personal injury claim is made:
Most Common Type of Personal Injury Claims
While each person’s injury and case may be different, there are certain broad areas which claims fall into. These inculde:
- Road Traffic claims
- Fatal Injury claims
- Accidents in the workplace
- Flight personal injury claims
- Bus accident claims
- Public place claims
How To Start Your Personal Injury Claim
All personal Injury claims in Ireland must be assessed by the Personal Injuries Board Ireland. The injured party can make a claim directly to the personal injuries board themselves or you can consult us here at Crawford Gallagher to make the claim.
If you make the claim yourself, you must be aware of the statute of limitations that is running against your claim. If you have any hesitation regarding your claim, you should seek legal advice.
Your solicitor can submit your application to the Personal Injuries Board and liaise with them regarding your claim. Your solicitor is aware of the legal process involved and can advise you of any legal issues that can arise, or seek expert opinion where necessary, to ensure the smooth running of your claim. Once the injuries board have received all your documents are happy with then they will then laisse with the respondent to enquire if they are happy with the assessment. If they are not happy with the assessment, then your solicitor will be provided with an Authorisation where the claim must then go forward to the relevant court.
You can then decide if you should bring your claim to the next level, which is, to pursue your claim in the civil courts. This should be discussed in detail with your solicitor and where necessary, advice from council should be sought.
Time Limit/ Statute of Limitations on Personal Injury Claims
Remember all legal actions have a time limit. Therefore, where you have suffered a personal injury the legal time limit is usually 2 years. There are however some exceptions to the two-year rule, which include the following persons:
- a victim of an intentional assault may well have 6 years in which to bring their claim.
- a person who has suffered from a “legal disability” when they were injured. This includes people under 18 years of age
- a person without knowledge of their injury – until they have discovered they have been injured through someone else’s fault.
For Children who have suffered an injury, the process is different as a minor cannot bring a claim forward themselves. A claim can be brought on behalf of a child by what is called a ‘next friend’ or family. However, once the child reaches 18 years of age the 2-year time limit starts to run.
Therefore, you should not delay in bringing your claim, as delay itself can defeat your claim. Remember the earlier you submit your claim the easier it is to recall.
Can Expenses Be Recovered in a Personal Injury Claim?
Yes, your out of pocket expenses can be claimed. Out of pocket expenses are also referred to as special damages. Special damages usually comprise of the following.
- Medical expenses – costs of attending doctor(s) medication, hospital bills etc
- X-rays, MRI scans, or treatment such as physiotherapy.
- Travel Expenses – any travel expenses directly related to the accident, injury such as cost of taxis, public transport to and from hospital or car parking are recoverable.
- Loss of Earnings – A calculation will be made as to how much earnings you have lost as a result of being out of work due to the injury as well as any future loss of earnings. These will also be calculated and included in the final amount of the award.
To conclude, a personal injury claim can be very straight forward, or it may be very complicated. As stated above, this is just a snapshot of how a personal injury claim is made. In any event you should seek legal advice if you think you may have a personal injury claim.
The material contained in this website is provided for general information only and does not constitute legal or other professional advice. We strongly recommend that you seek legal advice on any aspect of the law. For information or to book an appointment, please call us on 0749164906 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
“In contentious business, a solicitor may not calculate fees or other charges as a percentage or a proportion of any award or settlement.”