Irish Injury Claims News
Posted: October 12th, 2017
The High Court has approved a personal injury compensation settlement for €25,000 in relation to a 2012 accident that involved an 8-year-old boy being injured following a fall from a playground tower.
Conor Bolger, now aged 13, of Briarfield Road, Kilbarrack, took a child injury compensation action against Ashbourne Visitor Centre Ltd, Co Meath (trading as Tayto Park) through his father Brian Bolger. He (Conor) had to have pins inserted in his lower arm when he fractured his elbow in the fall that occurred on March 25 2012.
The Bolger family’s legal team claimed that there was overcrowding on the playground tower when Conor fell and this caused the accident. Additionally, they claimed that the area surrounding the playground tower had insufficient protective wood chips on the ground, a measure designed to protect individuals from injury in the event of a fall. They also claimed that the regularity of appropriate safety inspections was insufficient and that this contributed to the extent and severity of the injuries Conor suffered.
Ashbourne Visitor Centre (Tayto Park) legal counsel David McGrath SC dismissed these claims stating that Mr Bolger “just fell” and there were no safety concerns regarding overcrowding on the tower at the time of the incident. Conor Bolger’s family, the court was advised, were happy with the proposed €25,000 child injury compensation settlement.
High Court Justice Kevin Cross approved the child injury compensation settlement and commented that Conor’s scar, due to the insertion of the pins to treat the fractured elbow, was not “too upsetting”. Justice Cross also said, in his approval, that he (Conor) would have been affected due to being unable to play basketball for a duration of time after the accident operation.
Posted: August 4th, 2017
A High Court judge has awarded a woman more than €234,000 in settlement of her dog bite injury claim after a hearing for the assessment of damages.
The woman – who cannot be named under direction by the High Court – was enjoying an evening walk near her home when she approached two boxer dogs standing at the top of the driveway to their owner´s home. The two dogs started to approach the woman and, when she told them to go home, they jumped up and attacked her, knocking her onto the verge of the road.
During the prolonged attack, the woman suffered multiple puncture wounds and lacerations to both arms as she tried to shield her face, and smaller lacerations to her face and body. The dogs only stopped attacking the woman when a passing motorist sounded the horn on her car and the dogs ran away. The woman has multiple scars across her face and body, and suffered emotionally from her ordeal.
After the attack was reported to the Garda, the dogs were destroyed. The woman also made a dog bite injury claim against the owners of the dog, who admitted liability for her injuries. The woman´s claim was then referred to the High Court for the assessment of damages, and the assessment hearing took place last week before Mr Justice Anthony Barr.
At the assessment hearing, Judge Barr was shown photographs of the woman both before and after the attack. He also heard evidence from a medical expert confirming the injuries the woman had sustained and accepted that she suffered a moderate form of post-traumatic stress disorder following the attack that has affected her personality and mental state.
Awarding the woman €234,557 in settlement of her dog bite injury claim, the judge commented she had undergone a terrifying attack that had left her with substantial scarring. Judge Barr added he was confident the woman had not tried to embellish the details of the attack, nor had tried to exaggerate the injuries she had suffered.
Posted: July 6th, 2017
An award of jogger injury compensation has been increased to account for the upset the plaintiff suffered when accused of making a fraudulent claim.
In September 2011, the twenty-four year old jogger was returning to the Clondalkin caravan site in Dublin when he tripped on a hole in the footpath and fell – fracturing the knuckle of a finger in his right hand. He subsequently had to undergo surgery for his injury, which has left him with a permanent scar.
The man claimed jogger injury compensation from South Dublin County Council – the owners of the land on which the accident occurred – but the council disputed liability for his injury, alleging that the jogger – who was also an amateur boxer – had injured his knuckle in a boxing match.
The claim for jogger injury compensation went to the High Court where it was heard by Mr Justice Anthony Barr. During cross-examination, the council´s legal representatives argued the man had suffered soft tissue injuries in a car accident the previous day and would not have been out jogging the following morning.
They repeated their allegations that the injury had been sustained in a boxing match, and insinuated through their questioning of the plaintiff that the jogger injury compensation claim was fraudulent. However, Judge Barr accepted the evidence of a medical witness giving testimony on behalf of the plaintiff that the man was just trying to run off his soft tissue injury.
The judge concluded this was a “credible explanation” for why the man had been out jogging and found in the plaintiff´s favour. Judge Barr added there was no evidence to suggest the jogger was making a fraudulent claim, and awarded him €55,000 jogger injury compensation plus a further €5,000 in aggravated damages for the upset caused by the council´s unjustified allegations.
Posted: May 16th, 2017
A former mechanic has claimed the Defence Forces are not doing enough to protect servicemen and their families from air corps toxic exposure.
A former air corps engineer came forward under a protected disclosure agreement to raise concerns about prolonged chemical exposure at his former base. He has expressed concerns regarding the physical and psychological wellbeing of servicemen at the Casement Airbase in Baldonnel, County Dublin, due to the toxic exposure.
Addressing an assembly of senior Ministers, TDs, senators and members of the Defence Forces, the “whistle-blower” claims that the unprotected exposure to known carcinogenic and mutagenic chemicals -including dicholoromethane-was causing servicemen, their partners and their children to suffer illnesses – some of which were fatal.
The formed mechanic alleges that exposure to the chemicals had resulted in the premature death of up to twenty servicemen. He also claimed that five children of servicemen had died from cancer-related and birth defect-related illnesses and that many servicemen´s partners were experiencing fertility issues. He wishes the authorities to investigate the link between these tragic incidents and exposure to chemicals at the facility.
The State Claims Agency is already defending six air corps toxic exposure claims made in 2015 and 2016 by former servicemen suffering neurological issues. All six plaintiffs worked in repair and maintenance workshops at the Casement Airbase.
Furthermore, in October of last year, a Health and Safety Authority (HSA) inspection of the Casement Airbase identified health and safety issues related to the air corps toxic exposure claims and stated that the facility was “in need of immediate attention”. The HSA threatened to prosecute the Defence Forces if its recommendations were not carried out.
Following the most recent air corps toxic exposure claims, a spokesperson for the Department of Defence told thejournal.ie an independent third party had been appointed to review the allegations and it would be inappropriate to comment before receiving their report. A spokesperson for the Defence Forces stated: “Given these matters are subject to litigation, it would be inappropriate to comment further.”
Dublin South Central TD Aengus Ó Snodaigh has been heavily critical of the manner in which these claims have been dealt with. He told thejournal.ie air corps toxic exposure claims “have largely fallen on deaf ears” since the 1990s. He described the most recent revelations about a lack of health and security at the Casement Airbase “alarming”, and accused junior Justice Minister Paul Kehoe of being indifferent “to the plight of the Defence Forces”.
Posted: April 18th, 2017
A judge has approved a settlement of compensation made to a young girl after an accident in a swimming pool left her with a visible scar on her face.
In August 2012, a young girl (eight years old at the time of the incident)was on a family holiday to the Sol Principe Hotel in Torremolinos on the Costa Del Sol. While the girl was swimming in the hotel´s pool, another guest dived into the pool, landing on top of her. This pushed her to the bottom of the pool, causing her chin to collide with the tiles, cutting it.
The girl received on-site medical attention, and was taken by her family to a local medical clinic.The cut to her chin was cleaned and seristrips were applied to the wound. As a result of the accident, the girl suffered pain, distress and discomfort. She was left with a pale scar on her chin, 1 cm in length. The family sought legal counsel, and through her father she claimed compensation for a Spanish swimming pool accident against the hotel and the travel agent through whom the holiday had been booked.
In the claim for compensation for a Spanish swimming pool accident, it was alleged the hotel – and, by association, the travel agent – had been negligent and failed in its breach of duty by failing to take adequate precautions while guests were using the swimming pool. It was also alleged there was a lack of adequate supervision of the fellow guest that had dived into the pool, and more staff on site would have prevented the accident from occurring.
The defendants denied liability, and a full defence was entered against the claim. It was also argued that the case should be heard in Spain, rather than in Ireland, because of the location in which it took place. However, at the Circuit Civil Court, Mr Justice Raymond, heard that an initial offer of settlement amounting to €5,000 compensation for a Spanish swimming pool accident had been made by the two defendants, without admission of liability.
The offer of settlement was of a value that would be offered to the girl if the family were to successfully bring a claim in Spain. Judge Groarke heard that the offer had been since increased to €12,500 after initially being rejected by the family. Due to continued disputes of liability, the family had agreed to accept the increased offer. The judge said, in the circumstances he was happy to approve the settlement of compensation for a Spanish swimming pool accident.
Posted: March 16th, 2017
A young girl has received compensation for an injury she sustained while swimming in a pool while on holiday with her family in Spain.
A Spanish holiday injury claim was made following an accident which involved a young girl in the swimming pool of the Sol Principe Hotel in Torremolinos. The girl, who was eight-years-old at the time of the incident, had been swimming in the pool when another holidaymaker dived in. Unfortunately the fellow guest landed on top of the girl and forced her to the bottom of the pool. Her chin impacted with the tiles, cutting it open.
Alarmed, girl´s father took her to a local medical centre, where the injury was treated. with steristrips. The family sought legal counsel on return to Ireland. On his daughter’s behalf, the man made a Spanish holiday injury claim against the owners of the Sol Principe Hotel and, by association, the Irish travel agent through whom the family holiday had been booked.
In the claim, it was alleged there had been a failure by the hotel to take adequate safety precautions while guests were using the pool, and thus they had directly failed to prevent the young girl’s injury. It was further claimed that the accident could have been prevented with adequate supervision and, that as a result of the accident, the girl had suffered pain and discomfort and experienced a disturbance of her social and recreational life. The family’s holiday had been ruined as a result of her injury.
The allegations were denied by the defendants and a full defence entered against the Spanish holiday injury claim. Despite denying liability, an offer of compensation based on what the family would receive if the claim was successfully heard in Spain was made. This offer was declined. The two legal teams entered a period of negotiation, after which a second offer of settlement was forthcoming. The offer of €12,500 being accepted by the family following the advice of their solicitor.
As the Spanish holiday injury claim had been made on behalf of a minor, the settlement had to be approved by a judge to ensure that it was in her best interests. Consequently, the case was heard at the Circuit Civil Court in Dublin, by Mr Justice Raymond Groarke. The circumstances of the accident and details of the offer were related to Judge Groarke. After hearing that the girl had a 1cm scar on her chin as a result of the accident, but liability may be in doubt if the case went to a full hearing, Judge Groarke said he was happy to approve the settlement in the circumstances.
Posted: February 17th, 2017
A musician who sustained injuries to her neck and arm in an accident between two taxis has received compensation in what the judge called an “exceptional case”.
On March 8th 2012, a musician from Ardnacrusha in County Clare – was a passenger in a taxi when it was rear-ended on Wexford Street in Dublin by another taxi. Despite the low-speed collision, woman suffered pain in her neck and right shoulder as a result of the accident. She sought medical attention from her GP the day following the incident. She was diagnosed with soft-tissue damage, and was prescribed painkillers for her injury.
When the woman applied to the Injuries Board for an assessment of her claim, the negligent taxi driver accepted liability for causing the accident and her injuries. However, the amount of the assessment, and thus the value of compensation, was rejected by the woman. She claimed the proposed settlement of compensation for an injury in a taxi accident did not reflect the full consequences of her injury, and in particular did not reflect her reduced ability to play music.
The Injuries Board issued an authorisation for the woman to pursue her claim against the negligent taxi driver in court. The case was heard at the Circuit Civil Court in Dublin by Mr Justice Raymond Groarke. The judge heard how the pain in her right shoulder prevented the woman from practising her violin several hours a day, as she was required to do to maintain her career. The defendants protested this claim, stating that her injury was unrelated to the “insignificant” collision between the two vehicles.
Judge Groarke admitted that the medical evidence in the case was “very conflicting” and that on the “balance of probabilities” the woman would likely made a full recovery from her injury and would suffer no long-term damages. However, while concluding that the injuries from the accident were “not particularly serious”, the judge acknowledged that the woman needed a perfect shoulder to practise her violin. As such it was an exceptional case, and even her not particularly severe injuries should be treated as serious for a “talented musician” like her.
Judge Groarke awarded the woman €25,000 compensation for an injury in a taxi accident, stating he accepted the plaintiff´s belief that the discomfort she suffers is related to the March 2012 accident.
Posted: January 31st, 2017
The President of the Circuit Court in Dublin has deemed a settlement for leg injury compensation inadequate and has ordered the case to go to a full hearing.
The claim was made on behalf of a young girl who, whilst at a daycare centre in April 2015, fractured her tibia. The accident occurred at the Larkin Early Learning Centre in Ballybough, Dublin, when one of the children climbed on top of a wardrobe and fell to the floor. The girl, who has remained anonymous, was rushed to hospital where her leg was x-rayed and her fracture diagnosed. The girl required an operation to reset the bone.
For weeks after she was discharged from hospital, the girl had to wear a full-leg cast. Even after this was removed, she was required to wear a protective boot. Two years later, the child – who is now five years old – still complains to her mother of pains in the leg. Acting on the girl’s behalf, her mother consulted a solicitor and proceeded to make a claim for compensation against the Larkin Early Education Centre.
After an initial assessment of her medical records by the injuries Board, the play school offered the girl €31,000 in compensation for her broken leg. Her mother’s solicitors advised against accepting this offer, believing it inadequate for the nature of the injury sustained. Acting on this advice, the offer was refused and since no other was forthcoming, the case proceeded to the Circuit Civil Court.
At the court, Mr Justice Raymond Groarke was detailed the nature of the accident and the long-term impact the injury has had on the young girl. The judge agreed that the settlement was inadequate and has ordered the case to go to a full hearing, where a court will determine the settlement.
Judge Groarke’s decision was based on the recently revised Book of Quantum, which rules that the minimum compensation to be awarded for a fracture such as the little girl’s – where a bone had been displaced – was €40,500. Additionally, the book states that injuries to the tibia are more serious than similar injuries to the fibula, and the fact that the child is still suffering two years on means she should be awarded a higher settlement.
Posted: December 17th, 2016
A young boy, who seriously injured his finger on a poorly designed fireplace, has been awarded a five-figure settlement of compensation.
The injury occurred in November 2011, when the young boy was just sixteen months old. Whilst playing, he managed to slice his finger on the base of a wall-mounted fireplace. After he was rushed to the Accident and Emergency Department of Crumlin Hospital, it was discovered that he managed to completely sever a tendon, as well as damaging another. He also cut several nerves and an artery.
The injury had to be correctly surgically, with the young boy requiring a general anaesthetic for the duration of the procedure. Afterward, he had to wear a cast for several weeks. Five years on, and the child, fortunately, has no lasting damage except a small scar. This is expected to fade as he grows up.
Acting through his father, the boy made a claim for personal injury compensation against the manufacturers of the fireplace, Focal Point Fires of London, and its retailer, B&Q. The claim alleged that the fireplace had been poorly designed to prevent such accidents. Both the manufacturer and the retailer admitted negligence, offering €30,000 in compensation.
Though the family accepted the offer, the case had to proceed to the Circuit Court for approval. This was because the claim was made on behalf of a minor.
At the hearing, Judge James O’Donohoe was told the circumstances of the accident and subsequent injury. He was also informed that the child had recovered use of his hand and that there was little chance of permanent scarring. He proceeded to approve the settlement.
Posted: December 13th, 2016
A restaurant employee´s injury claim for a slip and fall accident at Heuston Station has been resolved at Court with an award of €22,500 compensation.
The twenty-five year old restaurant employee was working at the open air Heuston Refreshment Rooms at Dublin´s Heuston Station, when she slipped on pigeon droppings on the decking and fell – sustaining soft tissue injuries to her ankles, knees and lower back.
The woman applied to the Injuries Board for an assessment of her injury claim, but both her employer and Córas Iompair Éireann (CIE) – the corporation responsible for the upkeep of the station withheld their consent for the assessment to proceed.
The Injuries Board issued the woman with an authorization to pursue her injury claim for a slip and fall accident at Heuston Station in court, and the hearing to establish liability was heard earlier this week by Mr Justice Raymond Groarke at the Circuit Civil Court.
At the hearing, Judge Groarke was told that the woman´s job entailed serving customers and clearing the tables, but she would also spend a considerable amount of time shooing away pigeons that visited the restaurant six or seven times a day.
It was claimed that the comings and goings of the pigeons – and the droppings they left behind – made the outside area of the Heuston Refreshment Rooms an unsafe place to work, and that the plaintiff had brought the hazard to the attention of her employer on several occasions.
In its defence, the restaurant said it and complained to CIE about the pigeon problem numerous times, but the measures the corporation had implemented to deal with the problem had been ineffective.
The judge agreed with the representative of Heuston Refreshment Rooms about the effectiveness of the deterrents CIE had implemented, and said that although he was making judgement against both defendants, he would make an order in favour of the restaurant against CIE.
Judge Groarke awarded the plaintiff €22,500 compensation in settlement of her injury claim for a slip and fall accident at Heuston Station and also her costs of €2,148. He commented that her accident was completely foreseeable and effective measures should have been implemented to provide a safe working environment.