Category: Personal Injury Claims

There are many different reasons why personal injury claim in Ireland are made. Avoidable accidents on the roads, at work and in places of public access can result in serious injury which prevents the victim from working, completing day-to-day activities and enjoying leisure and social pursuits. In order for personal injury claims in Ireland to be successful, it also has to be shown that somebody who owed you a duty of care failed in their responsibility for your health and safety, and that you sustained an injury as a direct result. In order to establish whether you are entitled to make personal injury claims in Ireland, you are invited to call our freephone Solicitors Advisory Panel and speak directly with an experienced Irish solicitor to discuss the circumstance of your accident.

Woman Awarded Compensation for Dog Bite Injuries

A woman has been awarded more than €234,000 compensation for dog bite injuries she sustained in a terrifying attack by two powerful boxer dogs.

The unnamed woman was enjoying an evening walk along a rural lane when the attack happened. Two boxer dogs, who had been standing in the driveway of their owner´s home, started to approach her. The woman told them to go home, but they jumped up at her, knocked her to the ground, and started attacking her.

The woman´s first thoughts were to protect her face by covering it with her arms, but the dogs managed to get through her defences – biting her face, head, forearms and body, and causing multiple puncture wounds and lacerations that have now developed into visible and permanent scars.

The attack was stopped by a passing lady motorist, who sounded the horn of her car and frightened the dogs away. The boxer dogs have since been destroyed and their owners admitted liability when the woman made a claim for compensation for dog bite injuries. In order to settle the claim, the case went to the High Court for an assessment of damages.

At the assessment hearing, Mr Justice Anthony Barr was told the details of the attack. The judge also heard evidence from medical experts who attested to her physical and emotional injuries. When the woman gave her evidence, she told the judge who she had been devastated by the change in her appearance and how her young children had been frightened to get close to her.

Judge Barr was shown photographs of the woman taken shortly before and after the attack, and he accepted she had undergone a profound change in her appearance, personality and mental state as a result. The judge also acknowledge she had suffered a moderate level of post-traumatic stress disorder.

Awarding the woman €234,557 compensation for dog bite injuries, the judge said he was confident she had had not exaggerated the injuries she had sustained nor embellished the details of the terrifying attack.

Jogger Awarded Compensation for a Trip and Fall Injury on Council Land

A jogger has been awarded €60,000 compensation for a trip and fall injury on council land after the council attempted to argue that the claim was fraudulent.

On September 18th, 2011, the male jogger tripped on a hole in the surface of a footpath in the Clondalkin caravan site in Dublin. When he fell, he fractured a knuckle on his right hand which he subsequently had to undergo surgery for and has since been left with a scar.

As the caravan site is owned and managed by South Dublin County Council, the jogger claimed compensation for a trip and fall injury on council land. The council disputed liability and argued the man – who was a keen boxer – had injured his knuckle in a fight.

Due to the dispute over liability, the case went to the High Court where it was heard by Mr Justice Anthony Barr. During the hearing, it was disclosed that the man had been involved in a car accident the previous day in which he had suffered soft tissue injuries to his neck and back.

The council used this information to express doubts that the man would have gone jogging the day after an accident, and repeated its argument that the injury had been sustained in a boxing match. However, judge Barr accepted the evidence of a medical witness, who testified 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 jogging on the morning after a car accident, and awarded him €55,000 compensation for a trip and fall injury on council land – increasing the award by €5,000 to account for the aggressive manner in which the council had pursued their argument the claim was fraudulent.

Judge Barr said in his closing remarks that the evidence suggested the plaintiff was injured in the manner in which he had claimed. He added there was no evidence to suggest the jogger was making a fraudulent claim, and he was entitled to the additional compensation for the upset caused to him by the nature of the unsuccessful defence put forward by South Dublin County Council.

Claim for an Injury in a Train Station Accident Resolved at Court

A claim for an injury in a train station accident has been resolved at a hearing of the Circuit Civil Court in which the passenger was found 50% at fault.

The claim for an injury in a train station accident was made following the events of 2nd August 2012, when the plaintiff – a fisherman from Dun Laoghaire in County Dublin – mistakenly alighted from an Irish Rail commuter train at Tara Street instead of his intended destination of Connolly Street.

On realising his mistake, the plaintiff tried to re-board the train, but slipped and fell through the gap between the platform and the train. Although he was able to extricate himself and continue his journey, an x-ray taken the following day revealed that he had fractured his right shoulder in three places.

The plaintiff applied to the Injuries Board for an assessment of his claim for an injury in a train station accident, but Irish Rail denied its consent for the assessment to be done. The Injuries Board subsequently issued the plaintiff with an authorisation to pursue his claim through court action.

The claim for an injury in a train station accident was heard by Mr Justice Raymond Groarke at the Circuit Civil Court last week. At the hearing, Judge Groarke was told that, despite there being “probably more cameras at Tara Street Station than there are at Pinewood Studios,” the accident had not been captured by CCTV.

The judge heard that Irish Rail was contesting the claim for an injury in a train station accident because they felt the plaintiff was the architect of his misfortune by failing to look where he was going, although this argument was countered by the plaintiff´s counsel, who contested that Irish Rail had an obligation to provide safe transit and that obligation had not been met.

After hearing there had been eleven previous incidents of passengers falling between a platform and a train in the past five years, Judge Groarke commented that Irish Rail had an “absolute requirement” to warn passengers to mind the gap. The judge found in the plaintiff´s favour – although attributing him 50% contributory negligence – and awarded him €25,000 compensation in settlement of his claim for an injury in a train station accident.

Judge Increases Award of Compensation for a Swimming Pool Injury

A High Court judge has increased an award of compensation for a swimming pool injury and dismissed an appeal by the venue at which the injury was sustained.

On 13th November 2011, Timea Babos broke her two upper front teeth when diving into the swimming pool at the West Wood Club in Dublin and hitting her face on the bottom of the pool. After having crowns fitted to her broken teeth, Timea claimed compensation for a swimming pool injury on the grounds that there were no warning signs indicating that the 50 metre pool had a single depth of just 1.35 metres.

The West Wood Club denied liability for Timea´s injury and she was issued with an Authorisation to pursue her claim in court. In May 2015, Judge Jacqueline Linnane awarded Timea €30,000 compensation for a swimming pool injury at a hearing of the Circuit Civil Court. However, the West Wood Club appealed the decision, contesting the award on the grounds that Timea had contributed to her injury by failing to check the depth of the water before diving in.

At the appeal hearing this week, Mr Justice Seamus Noonan was told that Timea had never visited the venue before and, being a 50 metre pool, she had expected it to have a depth of two metres. The judge also heard there were no warning signs indicating the shallowness of the pool or any red indicators advising guests not to jump or dive into the pool. Timea´s counsel told Judge Noonan that there were no reasons at all to believe the pool was not safe.

Describing the signage as “woefully inadequate”, Judge Noonan said he did not accept West Wood´s claim that there was a lifeguard on duty at the time. The judge dismissed the appeal and increased the award of compensation for a swimming pool injury to €38,097 – commenting that it was a very modest award in the circumstances and that the West Wood Club was fortunate that the claim had not initially been brought in a court with a higher jurisdiction.

Emotional Trauma Compensation for a Shopping Centre Incident Awarded

A woman who suffered a psychological injury when she was trapped in a lift has been awarded emotional trauma compensation for a shopping centre incident.

On 31st August 2012, Marie Dicker – a fifty-four year old department store supervisor from Walkinstown in Dublin – was shopping with her son at the Square Shopping Centre in Tallaght, when the couple took the lift to travel down to the ground floor.

Shortly after the lift started to descend it came to a sudden halt. Trapped inside the lift, Marie tried to summon assistance by pressing the alarm button. When she was unable to reach anybody on the intercom, she banged on the lift doors and called for help.

After a few minutes of calling for help, the couple were rescued by a shopping centre security guard. However, despite the incident lasting less than five minutes, being trapped in the lift caused Marie to suffer a recurrence of childhood claustrophobia.

In the months following the shopping centre incident, Marie was unable to go into rooms without leaving the door open behind her. This made it difficult for her to use public toilets or shop fitting rooms, and in other situations Marie found that she became anxious unless she was close to the exit of any room she entered.

Marie sought professional medical help and was diagnosed with an anxiety disorder and depression. She then spoke with a solicitor and subsequently claimed emotional trauma compensation for a shopping centre incident against the shopping centre´s management company and the maintenance company responsible for the upkeep of the lift.

Square Management Ltd and Pickering Lifts Ltd acknowledged that there had been a breach in their duty of care, but disputed how much emotional trauma compensation for a shopping centre incident Marie was claiming. Unable to agree a negotiated settlement, the case went to the High Court for an assessment of damages.

At the hearing Mr Justice Anthony Barr was told that an independent psychiatrist commissioned by the defendants had found no evidence of an anxiety disorder when Marie was examined. However, the judge also heard that, since the incident, Marie has been under the care of a psychologist and has responded well to cognitive behaviour therapy that is expected to last for another eighteen months.

Judge Barr commented he was satisfied that Marie had suffered a psychological injury when she was trapped in the lift caused by a recurrence of childhood claustrophobia. He awarded her €25,060 emotional trauma compensation for a shopping centre incident.

Revised Injuries Board Book of Quantum Soon to be Released

A revised Injuries Board Book of Quantum is due to be released in the next few weeks, with more detail included to assist the accurate assessment of claims.

The Injuries Board Book of Quantum – the guide to compensation for physical personal injuries in Ireland – was originally published in June 2004. Intended to assist with the assessment of personal injury claims in which negligence had been admitted, the Injuries Board Book of Quantum lists a range of injuries and assigns them a financial value according to their severity and permanence.

The guide is not solely used by the Injuries Board. Solicitors negotiate settlements based on the values listed in the Injuries Board Book of Quantum and courts use the guide as a means of determining compensation awards. However, in recent years the guide has been criticised by judges for falling behind the times. Judges have often compensated for the age of the Injuries Board Book of Quantum by increasing awards of personal injury compensation – for which they themselves have been criticised.

Economic factors – such as low interest rates – have not helped matters, especially in the settlement of catastrophic injury claims. Whereas previously, judges would factor in an interest rate of 3%-4% when awarding lump sum payments, most recently they has awarded higher amounts of compensation due to the lack of interest claimants will receive if the funds are deposited in an interest-yielding account.

Now, after months of discussion between the Injuries Board, the Courts Service and senior judges, a revised Injuries Board Book of Quantum is due to be released in the next few weeks. Those who have seen the work in progress say that the values for relatively minor injuries are being increased in line with the increased cost of living, while some reductions are being made in the values for more serious injuries. The values have been apparently calculated based on injury compensation awards in 52,000 cases between 2013 and 2014.

How the revised Injuries Board Book of Quantum will be received is not yet known. Insurance companies – struggling after years of reduced returns from their investments – will likely be dissatisfied with any increase in the value of personal injury claims. Judges might also be unhappy with awarding lump sum compensation awards that fail to ensure the financial security of a plaintiff who has suffered a catastrophic injury.

One thing that all parties should consider is that the Injuries Board Book of Quantum only addresses the personal injuries a plaintiff has suffered. Any verifiable psychological injury or any verifiable deterioration in the plaintiff´s quality of life should also be considered in the settlement of a personal injury claim in Ireland. Because of the likelihood of defendants and their insurance companies relying solely on the Injuries Board Book of Quantum to calculate their financial liabilities, it is advisable to speak with a personal injury solicitor if you have been injured in an accident in Ireland for which you were not to blame.

Judge Awards Bicycle Courier Injury Compensation at High Court Hearing

A judge at the High Court has awarded bicycle courier injury compensation after dismissing claims that the plaintiff had contributed to causing the accident.

In March 2015, Rotimi Omotayo was cycling along Custom House Quay in Dublin when he was knocked from his bike by a taxi driven by Kenneth Griffin that had pulled out from a line of queuing traffic without indicating.

Fortunately, Rotimi did not suffer any serious injuries, but when he applied to the Injuries Board for bicycle courier injury compensation, consent for the Injuries Board to conduct the assessment was denied due to alleged contributory negligence.

Rotimi was issued with an authorisation to pursue his claim for bicycle courier injury compensation in court. Because of the potential value of the claim, the case was assigned to the High Court, where it was heard recently by Mr Justice Bernard Barton.

At the hearing, Judge Barton heard witnesses from both parties testify how the accident had occurred – the important issue being whether Rotimi had been in breach of Regulation 26 of the Road Traffic (Traffic and Parking) Regulations 1997 by cycling in the hatched area.

After hearing that Rotimi had been cycling between carriageways as he was about to turn right to deliver a package on the river side of the Quay, the judge ruled that he had every entitlement to cycle in the outside lane before turning right.

Judge Barton dismissed the claim of contributory negligence and assigned full liability to the taxi driver – saying that Rotimi had the right of way and was sufficiently close to Kenneth Griffin to give the taxi driver a duty of care. Consequently the taxi driver had to accept full liability for the accident.

In relation to the settlement of bicycle courier injury compensation, Judge Barton applied the principals of Tort law to award Rotimi €30,000 bicycle courier injury compensation saying that the Book of Quantum was “hopelessly out of date and of little assistance”.

With regard to Rotimi´s claim for special damages, the judge commented there was insufficient evidence to support Rotimi´s alleged loss of earnings, but he allowed Rotimi´s “properly vouched and agreed” special damages – including his legal costs.

Woman Awarded Compensation for being Hit by a Wing Mirror While Jogging

A woman has been awarded €134,000 injury compensation for being hit by a wing mirror of a van while she was out jogging in Mullingar with a friend.

Donna Woods and her friend were jogging along the Ballynacarragy to Mullingar road in January 2013, when Donna was hit by the wing mirror of a passing van. Donna suffered a fractured wrist in the accident, and also injuries to her right hand, elbow, shoulder and jaw.

Donna applied for an Injuries Board assessment of her claim for compensation for being hit by a wing mirror, but the driver of the van – Joseph Tyrell – refused to give his consent, and Donna was given an authorisation to pursue her claim in court.

Due to the potential value of the claim, the hearing was held at the High Court before Mr Justice Kevin Cross. At the hearing, Judge Cross was told that Donna – a forty-seven year old teacher from Mullingar in County Westmeath – had previously been a “very active lady”.

The judge also heard that on 22nd January 2013, Donna and her friend were jogging in the opposite direction to the traffic. A tractor and trailer had just passed them on the far side of the road, and they had seen Tyrell pull over onto the grass verge to give the tractor a wide berth.

The two women continued running, as they believed that Tyrell would drive back onto the road once the tractor had passed. However, Tyrell continued to drive along the grass verge – catching Donna with the wing mirror of his van and causing her injuries.

Defending the claim for compensation for being hit by a wing mirror, Tyrell argued that Donna has been at least partly responsible for her injuries by her and her friend running along the road two abreast and for failing to wear high visibility clothing.

Tyrell´s defence was dismissed by Judge Cross. The judge said that, had Tyrell rejoined the road once the tractor had passed, there would have been sufficient room for him to pass Donna safely. The judge also found that Donna had been wearing bright-coloured clothing on the morning of the accident.

The judge awarded Donna €134,000 compensation for being hit by a wing mirror, stating that Donna had suffered quite significant injuries that would prevent her from competing in physically demanding sports activities for a long time.

Court Awards Compensation for Defamation on Facebook

A Monaghan court has awarded the National Director of the National Association of Regional Game Councils €75,000 compensation for defamation on Facebook.

On or around 22nd December 2015, John Gilsenan from Castleblayney in County Monaghan posted defamatory comments about Desmond Crofton –  the National Director of the National Association of Regional Game Councils (NARGC) – on his Facebook page, suggesting that the actions of the National Director had caused the NARGC to “go broke”.

The defamatory comments were seen by other NARGC members, who raised questions about the leadership of the National Director, the organisation´s finances and its legal costs. The questions resulted in an unnecessary confrontation, with the outcome that Crofton was suspended from his position of National Director on full pay.

After seeking legal advice, Crofton – from Stonestown in County Offaly – made a claim for compensation for defamation on Facebook against Gilsenan. According to Crofton´s solicitor, Gilsenan had engaged in communication with his client soon after the claim was made, but had since “abandoned the matter”.

With the claim for compensation for defamation on Facebook remaining uncontested, the case went to the Monaghan Circuit Criminal Court, where it was heard by Judge John O´Hagan for the assessment of damages only. After hearing of the personal injury Crofton had suffered because of the defamatory comments, Judge O´Hagan awarded him €75,000 compensation for defamation on Facebook.

In his summing up, Judge O´Hara said he was awarding Crofton the maximum award of compensation for defamation on Facebook to “teach people posting messages on the social media site to be very careful”.

Injured Rider Settles Compensation Claim for a Fall from a Pony

A dentist, who was injured in an accident on a pony trek, has settled her compensation claim for a fall from a pony during a hearing to establish liability.

Thirty-five year old mother-of-two Maria Gray – a dentist from Belfast – was among a group of friends celebrating a hen weekend in Galway when she joined her friends on a pony trek at Feeney’s Riding School in Thonabrocky. The trek started with a gentle trot through the countryside but, when the party started descending a steep incline, the legs of Maria´s pony buckled and Maria fell from the saddle.

Due to falling on hard tarmac, Maria sustained a deep cut on her chin and a wrist injury. The cut was cleaned and stitches were applied at hospital, but Maria now has a permanent scar that is visible to her patients. Maria had to undergo eight weeks of physiotherapy on her wrist injury – during which time she wore a splint on her arm and was unable to work.

Maria made a compensation claim for a fall from a pony against the owners of the riding school – Gerard and Siobhan Feeney. In her claim, Maria alleged that the pony was unsuitable for her 5 foot 8½ inches frame, that it was exhausted and hungry from participating in an earlier trek, and that the riding school had not given her adequate instruction before letting her ride the pony.

The Feeney´s denied the allegations and argued that – as well as having been given adequate instruction – Maria had been offered a larger pony to ride, but had declined the opportunity. Without the riding school´s consent to carry out an assessment, the Injuries Board issued Maria with an authorisation to pursue her compensation claim for a fall from a pony through the courts.

The hearing to establish liability opened at the High Court last week. Maria told Mr Justice Raymond Fullam that it had been a very hot day and, due to her pony having already been out on a trek earlier, it was hungry and tired. However, before the second day of the hearing, the Judge Fullam was told that the parties had negotiated a settlement of the compensation claim for a fall from a pony and the case could be struck.

Woman Awarded Compensation for a Slip and Fall in a Dublin Bar

A woman from County Offaly has been awarded €90,000 compensation for a slip and fall in a Dublin bar after a hearing into her claim at the High Court.

Sharon Kelly was a guest at a thirtieth birthday party being hosted at the Arc Café Bar on Fonthill Road, Dublin, on 28th May 2011 when – at around 1:00am in the morning – she left the rest of the party to visit the toilets.

As she walked across the wooden floor of the bar´s lobby, Sharon slipped on some liquid on the floor and fell – dislocating her thumb as she landed. As a result of her slip and fall accident, Sharon was in pain for several months and has lost some feeling in the top of her thumb.

Sharon claimed compensation for a slip and fall in a Dublin bar, but the bar´s owners – Lackabeg Limited – denied liability for her injuries on the grounds that the bar had a comprehensive cleaning system in place.

As consent to assess the claim for compensation for a slip and fall in a Dublin bar was denied, the Injuries Board issued Sharon with an authorisation to pursue her claim in court. The hearing was heard late last week by Mr Justice Anthony Barr.

At the hearing, the bar´s legal representatives argued that Sharon had been drinking for five hours before slipping and falling, and that she was wearing four-inch heels at the time of her accident.

However, after reviewing CCTV footage of Sharon´s accident and hearing from two witnesses that the toilets had been in poor condition that evening, Judge Barr found in Sharon´s favour.

Saying that he was convinced that there had been liquid on the floor of the bar´s lobby and that “people cannot be expected to look at the floor when walking across a bar”, the judge awarded Sharon €90,000 compensation for a slip and fall in a Dublin bar.

Claim for Brain Damage in a Lorry Accident Resolved in Court

A claim for brain damage in a lorry accident has been resolved at the High Court with the approval of a €750,000 injury compensation settlement.

Twenty-five year old Francis Smith was driving on the outskirts of Edgeworthstown in County Longford when, on January 27, 2009, he crashed into the back of a stationary council lorry while trying to avoid a collision with a car heading towards him.

The lorry had been parked close to where Longford County Council was carrying out repairs to the road, and Francis was unlikely to have seen it as he came around the bend immediately preceding the roadworks.

Although neither of Francis´ two passengers were injured in the crash, Francis suffered brain damage. He now has physical and cognitive difficulties that prevent him from leading an independent life. He has also had to give up the job he had in a local factory.

Francis´ mother – Martina Dempsey – made a compensation claim for brain damage in a lorry accident on behalf of her son – alleging in her legal action that Longford County Council had been negligent by failing to provide warning signs ahead of the roadworks.

It was also claimed that the lorry into which Francis crashed was parked too far out into the carriageway, creating a hazard for motorists coming off of the bend.

Longford County Council denied its liability for Francis´ brain damage. The council argued that Francis had contributed to the cause of the accident, and therefore his injury, by driving around the bend at an excessive speed.

Eventually the two parties agreed on a €750,000 settlement of the claim for brain damage in a lorry accident; but, as the claim had been made on behalf of a plaintiff unable to represent himself, the settlement had to be approved by a judge.

Consequently, the circumstances leading up to Francis´ accident and the impact it has had on his quality of life were related to Mr Justice Kevin Cross earlier this week at the High Court. The judge approved the settlement – noting that it represented 25% of the full value of the claim for brain damage in a lorry accident.

Claim for being Trapped in a Shop Changing Room Resolved with Approval of Settlement

Two girls´ claim for being trapped in a shop changing room while a mock armed robbery was taking place has been resolved at the Circuit Civil Court.

In March 2013, the two girls – Abbie and Casie Kennedy from Lucan in County Dublin – had been shopping with their mother at the H&M shop in the Dundrum Shopping Centre, and were in one of the shop´s changing rooms, when they heard someone shouting at the staff to open the till and get down on the floor.

Unaware that what they could hear was part of a training exercise, the three remained trapped in the shop changing room until there was silence. The girls´ mother – Claudia – then opened the changing room door and looked out but saw nothing. She waited several minutes until she heard voices in the shop before leaving the changing room with her terrified daughters.

On speaking with a store manager, Claudia discovered that the event had been a robbery simulation and, when she got home, she called the H&M head office to complain that the shop had failed to check for the presence of customers before starting the training exercise. A representative of the company apologised and offered Claudia a €30 voucher.

Dissatisfied with the response from the company, Claudia made a claim for being trapped in a shop changing room on behalf of her two daughters against H&M Hennes &Mauritz (Ireland) Ltd. In her legal action, Claudia alleged that Abbie and Casie had been terrified and in fear for their and their mother’s lives. She also claimed that the experience had given both girls nightmares.

The company made offers of compensation for eleven-year-old Abbie (€10,000) and eight-year-old Casie (€8,000) in settlement of their claim for being trapped in a shop changing room. At the Circuit Civil Court in Dublin, Judge Rory MacCabe approved the offers after hearing how the sisters had been traumatised by the “terrifying” incident.

Boy Awarded Compensation for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder following a Fire

A fourteen-year-old boy has been awarded more than €50,000 compensation for post-traumatic stress disorder following a fire at his family´s home.

In June 2010, Aaron Monds from Kinnegad in County Westmeath was one four siblings rescued from a fire at the family home that had been caused by a faulty Hotpoint dishwasher. Aaron – who was only nine years of age at the time – had been diagnosed as suffering from a mild intellectual disability, and he was deeply traumatised by the fire.

For several years after the incident, Aaron displayed symptoms of obsessive compulsive disorder. He would check and re-check electrical appliances each night to ensure they were switched off and unplugged, developed an irrational fear of fire and would have night terrors about being engulfed in flames.

Aaron´s father – Henry Monds – sought legal advice and on behalf of his son claimed compensation for post-traumatic stress disorder following a fire. Indesit UK Ltd – the manufacturers of the faulty Hotpoint dishwasher – acknowledged liability for the appliance being responsible for the fire and, by proximate cause, admitted liability for Aaron´s traumatic response.

As the Injuries Board does not assess psychological injuries, a hearing took place at the High Court before Mr Justice Bernard Barton to assess how much compensation for post-traumatic stress disorder following a fire Aaron was entitled to.

At the hearing, Judge Barton was told that Aaron still had anxiety attacks about another fire in the family home but that his condition had improved after years of therapy. The judge accepted medical evidence that Aaron´s condition would now be described as residual symptoms of a post-traumatic stress disorder rather than obsessive compulsive behaviour.

The judge awarded Aaron €51,244 compensation for post-traumatic stress disorder following a fire and ordered that the settlement be paid into court funds until Aaron reaches the age of eighteen.

High Court Hears Back Injury Claim due to Workplace Conditions

The High Court has heard a back injury claim due to workplace conditions, and awarded the plaintiff €415,000 compensation for no longer being able to work.

In January 2011, Mohammed Ali Saleh was employed as a slaughter hall man at the Moyvalley Meats factory in County Kildare. While working at the pluck station on 11th January, Mohammed twisted to put meat from a dead animal onto a hook and felt a sharp pain in his back. Mohammed underwent an MRI scan that revealed that he had suffered a prolapse disc and needed urgent decompression treatment.

Despite undergoing two operations on his back, Mohammed´s condition did not improve. He was diagnosed with failed bad syndrome and suffers from persistent pain in his back and legs, has an associated foot weakness, and can only walk with the assistance of crutches. Unable to work, Mohammed made a back injury claim due to workplace conditions against his employer.

In his legal action against Moyvalley Meats Ireland Limited, Mohammed alleged that he had not been adequately trained to perform his duties without conducting a twisting manoeuvre and that the company had not introduced a safe system of work. The company contested Mohammed´s back injury claim due to workplace conditions, and a hearing was schedule for the case to be heard at the High Court.

At the hearing, Moyvalley Meats told Mr Justice Kevin Cross that Mohammed had been given on the job training and that his injury was attributable to an existing back condition. However, an expert witness testified that no safe system of work had been implemented to avoid the twisting manoeuvre responsible for Mohammed´s back injury, and that the only training Mohammed had received was watching an operative perform the task for a short period of time.

Judge Cross found in Mohammed´s favour, and awarded him €415,000 compensation in settlement of his back injury claim due to workplace conditions. The judge explained that the size of the compensation settlement reflected Mohammed´s lost income and his past and future pain and suffering.

Judge Dismisses Injury Claim for a Crash in a Car Park

Circuit Civil Court President, Mr Justice Raymond Groarke, has dismissed an injury claim for a crash in a car park after finding the plaintiff deceitful.

Rita Milinovic from Citywest in Dublin made an injury claim for a crash in a car park after being reversed into by a van on 5th April 2014. Twenty-nine year old Rita claimed that the “minor collision” had left her with a back injury that prevented her from working as a waitress, and that she had to eventually give up her job as the pain in her back prevented her from carrying plates.

Rita claimed €60,000 compensation against the van driver, Paul Ferris, and his employer – O´Dwyer Property Management Limited. Both defendants contested the claim on the grounds of the value Rita had assigned to it, and the case went to the Circuit Civil Court, where it was heard by Mr Justice Raymond Groarke.

When it was Rita´s turn to give evidence, she winced in the witness stand as she told the court about the injury she had suffered and the impact it had on her quality of life. However, the injury claim for a crash in a car park collapsed when barristers representing the defendants presented Judge Groarke with photographs taken from Rita´s Facebook page.

The photographs were of Rita working out in a Dublin gym and at the top of Bray Head six weeks after her accident. Further photographs showed Rita in a bikini competing at an international body sculptor competition. The barristers offered the opinion to the court that Rita´s claim for a crash in a car park was a lie from beginning to end.

Judge Groarke accepted that the photographs of Rita competing in a body sculptor competition would not have required much physical effort, but those of her in the gym depicted a scenario “which somebody with a bad back would certainly not be engaging in.” The judge added: “Trying to be as politically correct as one can be in this situation, it doesn’t look like a person with such a fine physical physique as Ms Milinovic could have been suffering a great deal of pain.”

Judge Groarke said that the law demands that people come to court in total honesty and, while Rita might have sustained some degree of injury in the car park crash, there was a question mark over how deceitful she had been with the court. The judge dismissed Rita´s injury claim for a crash in a car park and ordered that she pay the defendants legal fees and court costs.

Dunnes Slip and Fall Injury Claim Resolved in Circuit Civil Court

A shopper, who aggravated an existing condition when she slipped on a potato wedge, has resolved her Dunnes slip and fall injury claim at the Circuit Civil Court.

Sixty-year-old Anna Manning was shopping in her local Dunnes Stores in Clondalkin, Dublin, when she slipped on a discarded potato wedge and fell. As she initially believed she had suffered no injury, she allowed staff members help her to her feet. However the following day she attended her GP complaining of pains in her back and neck.

Following the November 2011 accident, Anna made a Dunnes slip and fall injury claim, alleging that the store had been negligent in failing to clear up an earlier spill of potato wedges. Dunnes Stores denied its liability for Anna´s injuries, and the Injuries Board issued her with an Authorisation after consent to process Anna´s application for assessment was denied.

The Dunnes slip and fall injury claim was heard recently at the Circuit Civil Court. At the hearing, Mr Justice Raymond Groarke was told that Anna had a history of back and neck pain, and that her pre-existing condition had been aggravated by the accident. The judge also heard that, as a result of the accident, Anna had developed wrist pain that affected her quality of life.

Dunnes Stores prepared a full defence against Anna´s claim and argued that she had contributed to her injuries by her own lack of care. The judge dismissed the claim of contributory negligence and said that Anna was a “very poor candidate” for a slip and fall in Dunnes Stores due to her previous medical history.

Judge Groarke found in Anna´s favour and awarded her €22,900 in settlement of her Dunnes slip and fall injury claim. He commented that, on the balance of probabilities, the potato wedge on which Anna had slipped and fallen had been a “brother or sister” of the wedges that had been cleared up earlier, and that Dunnes Stores was responsible for Anna´s injuries due to the failure to perform a thorough clear up of the spill.

Flight Attendant Brings Claim for Injuries due to a Bumpy Plane Landing

An Aer Lingus flight attendant has brought a claim for injuries due to a bumpy plane landing in respect of a November 2009 flight from Malaga to Dublin.

The claim for injuries due to a bumpy plane landing was brought by Cassandra Reddin (33) from Ratoath in County Meath who, on 19th November 2009, was a member of the flight crew on Aer Lingus flight EI582 flying into Dublin Airport from Malaga in Spain.

According to information provided in the claim, the Airbus 320 began to sway as it approached Dublin Airport and descended much faster than normal. When the plane landed on the runway, it bounced three times and did not stop as quickly as it normally would.

Due to the impact of the plane on the runway, Cassandra brought a claim for injuries due to a bumpy plane landing for whiplash-like injuries to her neck and back. She also alleges she feared that the plane would not stop before the end of the runway and that it was going to crash.

Cassandra applied to the Injuries Board for an assessment of her claim for injuries due to a bumpy plane landing, but Aer Lingus denied consent for the assessment to proceed. The Injuries Board subsequently issued Cassandra with an authorisation to pursue her claim through the courts.

The High Court hearing started earlier this week with Cassandra explaining to Mr Justice Michael Hanna that the bumpy landing caused the overhead luggage lockers to open and luggage to fall on top of passengers. Cassandra told the judge “There was a degree of chaos and stress on board.”

Cassandra also gave evidence that, in addition to her soft tissue injuries, she had suffered shock due to the bumpy landing and had cried the whole evening when she had got home. She told the court that in her opinion the cause of the bumpy landing was the co-pilot´s negligence in failing to adequately supervise the landing of the plane. The High Court hearing continues today.

Settlement of Compensation for a Severed Fingertip Approved in Court

A Circuit Civil Court judge has approved a €40,000 settlement of compensation for a severed fingertip accident in favour of a nine-year-old girl.

Julia Roman from Lucan in County Dublin severed her fingertip and lost a nail in November 2012, when she caught her finger between the doors of the local Doc Morris Pharmacy. Julia – who was just six years old at the time of her accident – was taken to the Emergency Department of Our Lady´s Children´s Hospital in Crumlin by her father.

Doctors were able to reattach the severed fingertip while Julia was under a general anaesthetic and the little girl had to attend the hospital several more times so that doctors could check on how she was recovering from her injury. Now nine years of age, Julia has a small scar on the bulb of her finger.

On her daughter’s behalf, Elena Roman made a claim for compensation for a severed fingertip against the owners of the Doc Morris Pharmacy – Unicare Pharmacy Ltd – and Lovco Cleaning and Building Services of Tallaght in Dublin – the company that had installed the doors between which Julia had caught her finger.

Liability for Julia’s injury was conceded by the two defendants, and an offer of compensation for a severed fingertip was proposed to the family amounting to €40,000. The family agreed to the settlement but, before Julia’s claim could be resolved, the proposal had to be approved by a judge to ensure that it was appropriate for the degree of her injury.

Consequently, at the Circuit Civil Court in Dublin, Mr Justice Raymond Groarke heard how Julia’s accident happened, and heard from Julia that she had to give up playing the piano because of the pain in her finger. Judge Groarke approved the settlement of compensation for a severed fingertip and closed the case.

Court Awards Compensation for a Slip and Fall Injury in a Bar

The Circuit Civil Court has awarded a painter and decorator €20,000 compensation for a slip and fall injury in a bar after a hearing to determine liability.

Thirty-one year old David O´Keeffe made his claim for compensation for a slip and fall injury in a bar after badly cutting his hand on a piece of glass at the Woolshed Baa & Grill on Parnell Street in Dublin on 18th September 2011. David had been in the bar to watch the All Ireland Football Final and, at the end of the game, he left his group of friends to visit the bathrooms.

As David manoeuvred his way through the packed bar, he slipped on the wet floor and fell – badly cutting his hand on broken glass that had been left on the floor. David was picked up by a member of the bar staff and given First Aid. He later attended the St James´ Hospital, where his cut hand was cleaned properly and the injury stitched.

David claimed compensation for a slip and fall injury in a bar, alleging that the Woolshed Baa & Grill had failed to follow proper cleaning procedures and that, because of this, the bar was liable for his injury. The bar denied its liability for David´s injury, and refused to consent to an Injuries Board assessment of the claim. Consequently David was issued with an authorisation to pursue his claim for compensation for a slip and fall injury in a bar through the court system.

The hearing to establish liability took place last week at the Circuit Civil Court, where Judge Jacqueline Linnane heard arguments that David´s injury was attributable to his friends trying to lift him up and dropping him while he had a glass in his hand. The bar owners testified that the venue had followed its cleaning procedures, and that an accident report had been filled out at the time, but that it could not be found.

At the end of the hearing, Judge Linnane found in David´s favour. She said that she accepted David´s version of events, as the bar had been packed “to the point that one would not have been able to see that the floor was wet”. The judge awarded David €20,000 compensation for a slip and fall injury in a bar.

Judge Approves Settlement of Compensation for Electrocution Injuries

A judge at the High Court has approved a €700,000 settlement of compensation for electrocution injuries in favour of a seventeen year-old-boy.

On July 3rd 2008, Kurt O´Callaghan was just ten years of age when he and his friends from Wexford City were playing in woodland near their homes. After helping make a camp, Kurt decided to put a “Keep Out” sign on a nearby electricity pole. Kurt climbed the wall of an adjacent housing estate to reach the pole, but as it started nailing his sign onto it, Kurt nailed into a high-voltage electric cable.

The force of the subsequent shock blew Kurt off of the wall, and he was fortunate inasmuch as a passing motorist saw the accident and was able to take him to hospital. Kurt was later transferred to the Children’s Hospital in Crumlin, where he spent the next three months receiving treatment for severe burns to his head, neck, shoulders, chest, and hands. Kurt may need further skin grafts in the future.

Through his mother – Denise – Kurt made a claim for compensation for electrocution injuries against the Electricity Service Board (ESB). In his legal action it was claimed that the ESB knew – or should have known – that a risk of injury existed, and that there had been a failure by the ESB to consider the wall Kurt had used to access the electricity pole as a risk due to its proximity to the electricity cables.

The claim for compensation for electrocution injuries was supported by a report compiled by an expert electrical engineer. The report was critical of the ESB for not identifying the risk of danger and, in addition to stating that the ESB had failed in its statutory requirement to ensure that electricity poles were inaccessible to a height of three metres, the electrical engineer found 52 other nails that had been used to hang posters.

The ESB denied liability for Kurt´s injuries, and the claim for compensation for electrocution injuries was scheduled for a full court hearing. However, prior to the hearing, a €700,000 settlement of the claim was agreed and a hearing was arranged for the settlement to be approved. At the approval hearing, Mr Justice Kevin Cross said that it was a good settlement in the circumstances as – if Kurt´s claim for compensation for electrocution injuries had gone to a full hearing – he may have been accused of contributory negligence.

Student Resolves Compensation Claim for Glass in a Dunnes Sauce

A twenty-two year old student, who suffered a cut mouth while eating a marinated pork chop, has resolved her compensation claim for glass in a Dunnes sauce.

Amy Holden from Ballybrack in Dublin made her compensation claim for glass in a Dunnes sauce after biting into a marinated pork chop that had been purchased from the Dunnes Stores in Cornelscourt and finding chards of glass in sauce the meat had been marinated in.

After removing the chards of glass from his daughter´s mouth, Amy´s father took her to the Accident & Emergency Department of St Colmcille´s Hospital in Loughlinstown. Amy was treated for her injuries, given a tetanus injection and X-rayed to see if she had digested any of the glass chards.

Although the X-ray revealed no internal injuries, Amy was advised to seek further medical attention if she started to feel sick or experienced any pain around her abdomen. Fortunately, the only ill-effect Amy subsequently suffered was a sore throat.

Amy made a compensation claim for glass in a Dunnes sauce and, as the claim involved Dunnes Stores´ public liability, Amy first approached the Injuries Board with an application for assessment. However, Dunnes Stores denied liability for Amy´s injuries, and she was issued with an Authorisation by the Injuries Board to pursue her case through the court system.

As the value of her claim had been estimated at €60,000, a hearing to resolve the compensation claim for glass in a Dunnes sauce was scheduled for the High Court. However, prior to the hearing getting underway, the court was told that the claim had been settled by negotiation and could be struck out.

The amount of the settlement or any terms attached to the settlement were not revealed. However, it is understood that Amy´s compensation claim for glass in a Dunnes sauce was resolved with an admission of liability from Dunnes Stores.

Insurance Industry Attacks Judges over High Court Injury Compensation Settlements

Representatives of the motor insurance industry have said that judges need to be educated about who pays for High Court injury compensation settlements.

The attack on High Court judges came after it was revealed that the average value of High Court injury compensation settlements had increased by 34 percent over the past twelve months. According to the Courts Service annual report, €155 million was awarded in High Court injury compensation settlements during 2014, at an average value of €304,000 compared with an average value of €227,000 in 2013.

During the same period, the average value of assessments conducted by the Injuries Board remained steady at around €22,600, and the increase in High Court injury compensation settlements prompted AA Ireland’s Conor Faughnan to say there was a need for judges to be educated to help them understand that High Court injury compensation settlements are paid for by the country´s two million drivers.

Some of the blame for the increase in High Court injury compensation settlements has been attributed to changes made by the Courts and Civil Law Act 2013, which raised the potential compensation level at which cases would be heard by the High Court from €38,092 to €60,000, and some observers believe that judges are automatically awarding a minimum of €60,000 even if the injury suffered merits less.

Dorothea Dowling – founding chairperson of the Injuries Board, and the chair of the Motor Insurance Advisory Board – believes that plaintiffs are shunning Injuries Board assessments for more money at the High Court. Ms Dowling told the Independent: “The Department of Justice was forewarned well in advance. This is what happens when you increase the limits of the lower courts”.

Whereas Mr Faughan and Ms Dowling may have a point when High Court injury compensation settlements are made in favour of road traffic accident victims, it is not an opinion shared by everybody. Earlier this year Mr Justice Bernard Barton, criticised the government for not updating the injury compensation values published in the Book of Quantum since 2004.

In McGarry v McGarry Judge Barton commented “it is unquestionably in the interests of the proper administration of justice that the Book be reviewed and be kept updated to properly reflect [High Court injury compensation settlements]”. During the case, Judge Barton acknowledged that for all practical purposes the Book of Quantum was being ignored by the courts because it was so out of date.

Man Awarded Compensation for a Dental Injury Caused by Dublin Airport Food

A man from Swords has been awarded €4,500 compensation for a dental injury caused by Dublin Airport food by a District Court judge.

In March 2013, Shane McQuillan (32) visited the Gate Clock Bar at Dublin Airport and purchased the ingredients for a sausage and bacon sandwich. He constructed the sandwich and bit into it, fracturing his upper right back molar on a hard piece of bacon rind.

Shane alleged that the rasher of bacon had been allowed to become stale due to it being left on display for a number of hours, and he claimed compensation for a dental injury caused by Dublin Airport food against the restaurant.

The owners of the Gate Clock Bar denied liability for Shane´s injury, arguing that food was replaced regularly and, that if Shane believed that eating the bacon was a risk to health, he should not have put it in his sandwich.

Without the consent to process Shane´s application for compensation for a dental injury caused by Dublin Airport food, the Injuries Board issued him with an authorisation to pursue his claim through the courts, and the case was heard last week at the District Court in Swords.

At the hearing, Judge Patricia McNamara was told Shane believed the food had been allowed to become stale due to it being left on display for several hours on a steel tray placed on top of a pan of steaming water.

The manager of the bar testified that the food is changed every ninety minutes, but she was unable to provide records to support her claim. The claim that Shane should be considered responsible for his dental injury was also repeated in court.

Judge McNamara found in Shane´s favour on the grounds that there was no evidence to support claims of the food being changed regularly. After hearing that Shane still suffers occasional pain from the fractured tooth and cannot drink cold drinks, the judge initially awarded him €6,500 compensation for a dental injury caused by Dublin Airport food and €2,500 in special damages.

However, the judge subsequently attributed Shane with 50 percent contributory negligence and – saying that he “should have been careful of a crispy rasher rind” – reduced the award of compensation for a dental injury caused by Dublin Airport food by half to €4,500.

Claim for a Dunnes Stores Trip and Fall Injury Resolved in Court

A claim for a Dunnes Stores trip and fall injury has been resolved in the High Court in Cork in favour of a pensioner who broke her hip in her local store.

On 2nd July 2013, Bernadette O´Leary (77) from Clonakilty in Cork was looking to purchase a waterproof canopy in her local Dunnes Store so that she could protect her stall at the weekly farmers market, where she sold food items such as homemade cakes.

Bernadette found a small detachable gazebo that she thought would be suitable, but before buying it she wanted to make sure that it was waterproof. Bernadette asked a shop assistant for advice and, as the shop assistant was unsure about the protection the gazebo would offer, he went to ask a colleague.

The shop assistant told Bernadette to follow him but, as she entered the adjacent aisle, she stumbled over a fold-away deckchair that had been left in the aisle waiting to be placed on a display shelf and fell heavily – breaking her hip.

Bernadette was taken to hospital by ambulance – where she waited forty-eight hours on a trolley waiting for a bed to become available. Once she was allowed home, Bernadette sought legal advice and made a claim for a Dunnes Stores trip and fall injury.

Bernadette claimed in her legal action that the fold-away deckchair left in the aisle represented a hazard contrary to Dunnes Stores´ own safety statement. The company contested Bernadette´s claim for a Dunnes Stores trip and fall injury by saying that she should have looked where she was going.

With Dunnes Stores denying liability for Bernadette´s broken hip, the Injuries Board issued an Authorisation for Bernadette to pursue her claim for a Dunnes Store trip and fall injury through the courts; and the case was heard this week by Mr Justice Henry Abbot at the High Court in Cork.

Judge Abbot was shown a CCTV video of the accident, after which he agreed with Bernadette´s counsel that “the defendant had invited the plaintiff into the path of a hazard on which she fell and was injured”. The judge awarded Bernadette €137,000 compensation in settlement of her claim for a Dunnes Stores trip and fall injury.

Court of Appeal Provides Guidance for After the Event Insurance in Ireland

The Court of Appeal has overturned a High Court ruling relating to security for costs and has provided guidance for after the event insurance in Ireland.

Because of the significant costs of defending a court case in Ireland, defendants can apply to a judge for the plaintiff to deposit a security of costs with the court to ensure that, if the plaintiff is unsuccessful with their claim, the defendant is assured of recovering their legal costs.

The application, if granted, has been used in the past as a strategy to force plaintiffs away from litigation when they do not have the assets to place a security of costs; and consequently more plaintiffs are using after the event insurance in Ireland to protect them from exposure to financial losses.

After the event or ATE insurance is a policy that can be purchased by plaintiffs when they make a claim for compensation. No premium is charged for the insurance policy until the result of the case is known; and usually the premium is only then deducted from an award of compensation.

However, during a High Court case last year, a defendant challenged the legality of a plaintiff to use after the event insurance in Ireland. The defendant claimed that after the event insurance in Ireland was contrary to the common law of champerty – a law that prevents third parties (in this case an insurance company) from providing financial support in a court case that the third party has no direct interest in.

The judge hearing the court case – Judge Hogan – reviewed how after the event insurance in Ireland works, and ruled that the provision of insurance to plaintiffs was not “trafficking in litigation” – the deed that the law of champetry was introduced to prevent – because the insurance company´s exclusive motive in supporting the plaintiff was not to derive a profit.

The judge´s ruling was appealed by the defendant, and arguments for and against after the event insurance were recently heard in the Court of Appeal. In a written judgement from Judge Kelly, the High Court ruling was overturned because the insurance policy in question was “highly conditional” and the insurance company providing the ATE insurance could have avoided payment to the defendant “for a substantial number of reasons outside the defendant’s control and knowledge”.

However, Judge Kelly wrote in his judgement that an after the event insurance policy is a factor for a court to give consideration to in exercising its discretion whether to order security for costs. The judge wrote that after the event insurance in Ireland could be used as a full or partial alternative to security for costs provided that it did not contain terms that would allow the insurance company to avoid payment to the defendant in the event of an unsuccessful claim.

The Appeal Court´s opinion does not make it possible for after the event insurance in Ireland to be used in every circumstance, but it should certainly provide access to justice for many more plaintiffs – particularly in complex personal injury claims that revolve around issues such as medical negligence or breach of professional duty.

€30,000 Injury Compensation for a Fitness Club Accident Awarded at Court

A judge at the Circuit Civil Court has awarded €30,000 injury compensation for a fitness club accident to a hotel supervisor from Dublin.

Timea Babos (30) was a guest at the West Wood Club in Dublin when, on 13th November 2011, she decided to go for a swim after coming out of the club´s sauna. Timea dived straight into the pool, but hit her face on the bottom of the pool and broke her two upper front teeth.

Bleeding heavily from her mouth, Timea completed an accident report form at the reception of the fitness club reception. She then attended her doctor´s surgery, where the bleeding was stopped and Timea was prescribed painkillers.

Two weeks later, Timea flew to Hungary to have crowns fitted to her broken teeth and, on her return she sought legal advice about claiming injury compensation for a fitness club accident. Her claim was initially submitted to the Injuries Board for assessment, but the West Wood Club denied liability for her injuries.

Consequently, the Injuries Board issued Timea with an authorisation to pursue her claim for injury compensation for a fitness club accident through the courts, and Timea´s solicitor filed the case with the Circuit Civil Court – claiming that there were no signs displayed warning of the shallow depth of the pool nor a lifeguard on duty to prevent Timea from diving in

The solicitor also arranged for a forensic engineer to inspect the pool; which he described as being unusual because it had no deep end. The forensic engineer found that the depth of the pool was only 1 metre 35 centimetres throughout (about four foot) and that there were inadequate signs to warn guests of the risk of injury.

At the Circuit Civil Court, Judge Jacqueline Linnane heard the West Wood Club argue that Timea was partly liable for the cause of her injury because of the manner in which she had dived into the pool after failing to check it´s depth.

The judge was also told that there were inadequate warnings around the perimeter of the pool and a lack of supervision in the pool area. The judge dismissed the West Wood Club´s argument that Timea had contributed to her injuries through her own negligence and awarded her €30,000 injury compensation for a fitness club accident.

Claim for an Accident at Dublin Airport Settled at High Court

A disputed claim for an accident at Dublin Airport has been settled at the High Court with the allocation of one-third contributory negligence against the plaintiff.

Sixty-nine year old Elizabeth Lavin arrived at Dublin Airport on 2nd November 2011 with the intention of flying to Manchester. As she was travelled towards Terminal 2 departures on the escalator, it suddenly juddered, causing Elizabeth to fall forward over her hand luggage and hit her head on the metal stairway.

Elizabeth – from Kilcullen in County Kildare – was taken to the Beaumont Hospital in Dublin, where her head injury and minor lacerations were treated. She subsequently had to undergo orthopaedic treatment for pain in her arm, hip and knee after trying to manage the pains with painkillers. Elizabeth still has scars on her face and her upper lip from her accident.

A claim for an accident at Dublin Airport was submitted to the Injuries Board, but Dublin Airport Authority PLC denied liability for Elizabeth´s accident. The Injuries Board issued an authorisation for Elizabeth to pursue her claim for an accident at Dublin Airport through the courts, and it was heard this week by Mr Justice Michael Hanna.

At the High Court, Judge Hanna heard Elizabeth´s legal representatives claim that Dublin Airport had failed to take reasonable care of her safety. They also alleged that the Airport Authority had been negligent when designing the airport, so that the only apparent way in which passengers with luggage could reach the upper level of Terminal 2 was by escalator.

Dublin Airport argued that Elizabeth had failed to appropriately use the handrail of the escalator and had contributed to the accident by placing her hand luggage in front of her, instead of behind her. The airport produced CCTV footage to show how Elizabeth´s accident had occurred, and also told the judge that the option of a lift was available to passengers with luggage.

Judge Hanna then heard that Elizabeth was unaware that the option of a lift was available because signs directing passengers to the lift were not erected until 2013. The judge said that Elizabeth could not be considered to have contributed to the accident for failing to appropriately use the handrail or for placing her hand luggage in front of her.

However, the judge said that she could have asked a member of the airport staff to direct her to the lifts. In this respect, the judge said, Elizabeth should take some responsibility for her injuries. He assigned Elizabeth one-third contributory negligence and reduced the settlement of her claim for an accident at Dublin Airport from €60,000 to €40,000.

Claim for an Injury due to an Accident in a Hotel Heard at the High Court

A former council worker´s claim for an injury due to an accident in a hotel is continuing after its first day of being heard at the High Court.

Benjamin Stanley (67) sustained a shoulder injury while attending a dance on Easter Sunday in 2009. According to testimony provided at the High Court yesterday, Benjamin had been attending a dance at the Castle Arms Hotel in Durrow, County Laois, and – after escorting his dancing partner back to her car – returned to the hotel to enjoy the remainder of the evening.

When he entered the hotel, Benjamin decided that he would use the bathroom facilities prior to returning to the dance floor; but, as he made his way across the hotel´s lobby, he slipped and fell. Unaware of any immediate injury, Benjamin carried on dancing; but, after driving himself back to his home in Birr, County Offaly, he started to experience intense pain in his shoulder.

Benjamin summoned a doctor and a torn tendon was diagnosed in his shoulder after an examination. Benjamin had to undergo surgery to repair the torn tendon, after which he sought legal advice and made a claim for an injury due to an accident in a hotel. In his claim, Benjamin alleged that his accident was due to the hotel´s failure to properly monitor and control the condition of the floor.

The hotel owner, Seosamh Murphy and Dal Riada Taverns Ltd – the licensee of the Castle Arms Hotel – denied that the hotel was responsible for Benjamin´s accident. They argued that the floors of the hotel were checked every two hours and that Benjamin had caused his own accident by rushing to the bathroom after having too much to drink.

As there was a dispute over liability, the Injuries Board could not assess Benjamin´s claim for an injury due to an accident in a hotel, and an Authorisation was issued so that Benjamin could pursue his claim through the court system. Consequently, at the High Court, Mr Justice Anthony Barr was told the circumstances of Benjamin´s fall.

Under cross-examination, Benjamin told the judge that he had not been rushing to the bathroom and had not had a drink the whole day. He said that he definitely felt something under his shoe as he slipped and it was whatever matter on the floor that was the cause of his injury. Unable to resolve the claim for an injury due to an accident in a hotel, Judge Barr adjourned the hearing and the case continues.

Majority Still Using Solicitors for Personal Injury Claims says Departing Injuries Board Head

The outgoing Chief Executive of the Injuries Board has acknowledged that the majority of claimants are still using solicitors for personal injury claims.

Patricia Byron acknowledged the continuing use of solicitors for personal injury claims in an interview published in the Irish Times this morning. Saying that “people still think that they need to go to a solicitor to send in a claim”, Ms Byron said that she was unsure whether that was due to a lack of knowledge or understanding of the Injuries Board system.

She went on to explain that the Injuries Board system is paper-based, with no oral or adversarial presentations required. When assessing a claim, Ms Byron stated, the Injuries Board does not take into account whether the claim has been sent in by a person with no legal training or whether the claimant has used solicitors for personal injury claims.

“It is an administrative process” said Ms Byron, who is stepping down from being the Chief Executive of the Injuries Board after ten years in charge. During that ten years, the Injuries Board claims to have delivered more than €1 billion in savings, reduced the cost of many personal injury claims in Ireland and reduced the time it takes for a claimant to receive compensation from three years to a little more than seven months.

However, the most recent figures released by the Injuries Board tend to support Ms Byron´s statement that the majority of claimants are still using solicitors for personal injury claims.

Only 39% of Personal Injury Claims Resolved by Injuries Board

Of 31,576 applications for assessment received in 2014, just 12,420 personal injury claims were resolved via the Injuries Board system. Not all of the remaining 61% of personal injury claims were resolved by solicitors, but those with liability issues or disputes over how much compensation the Injuries Board had assessed a claim for would have needed litigation to be settled.

Other claims (unfortunately) would have been resolved by third-party capture – where an insurance company makes an unsolicited approach to a claimant with a low offer of compensation in return for a quick settlement – while some claims will have dropped out of the system if the claimant did not have a genuine claims for compensation and gave up on their claim once liability was rejected.

Solicitor Defends Professional Guidance with Personal Injury Claims

In the Irish Times article, a representative from Dublin law firm Tyrrell Solicitors was invited to add his own perspective to Ms Byron´s admission that the majority of claimants were still using solicitors for personal injury claims. Roderick Tyrrell likened making personal injury claims to cutting your own hair, fixing your own leaking pipe or repairing a car engine.

Mr Tyrrell acknowledged that the Injuries Board provided a service for straightforward low-level claims, but when cases become more complex and there are “potential stumbling blocks” – like the value of a personal injury claim or identifying the legal entity against who to make a claim – claimants, insisted Mr Tyrrell, need guidance.

Settlement of Compensation for Dog Bite Injury Approved in Court

A young girl, who was attacked by a Rottweiler that had been allowed to escape from its home, has had a settlement of compensation for a dog bite injury approved at the High Court.

On December 26th 2011, Lauren Kelly from Abbeylara in County Longford was playing “hunting the wren” with family and friends when she came across a Rottweiler that had been allowed to escape from its home and wander the streets.

The Rottweiler attacked Lauren – who was just nine years old at the time – and, despite Lauren´s mother and friends trying to pull the dog away, Lauren suffered multiple bite injuries to her upper right arm. Lauren was treated at hospital for her dog bite injuries and subsequently had to undergo skin graft operations which has resulted in significant scarring.

Lauren made a claim for compensation for a dog bite injury through her father – Michael Kelly – alleging that the owner of the dog had been negligent in allowing the Rottweiler to escape. The dog´s owner – William Crawford also of Abbeylara in County Longford – admitted liability and a €150,000 settlement of compensation for a dog bite injury was negotiated.

In order for the settlement to be approved, Lauren´s claim for dog bite injury compensation was heard before Mr Justice Kevin Cross at the High Court in Dublin. Judge Cross was told how Lauren had been tossed around like a rag doll while the attack was in progress and how she subsequently suffered nightmares. Lauren also has to wear a protective sleeve while swimming to prevent an infection to her arm.

Mr Justice Kevin Cross approved the €150,000 settlement of compensation for a dog bite injury. The compensation settlement will be held in an interest-bearing account at the court until Lauren reaches the age of eighteen. Lauren´s patents will be able to access the compensation fund if Lauren requires further medical attention to cope with the consequences of the attack.

Model Awarded Compensation for Injuries at Petrol Station

A model has been awarded compensation for injuries at a petrol station after she was attacked by a sales assistant who claimed she had not paid for her petrol.

In May 2011, Trudy Higgins (26) from Drumcondra in Dublin was returning to her car after filling it with petrol at the Castle Service Station in Artane, Dublin, when she noticed a sales assistant approaching her and apparently taking photographs.

Trudy got inside her car, closed the doors and went to call her father for assistance. However, before she could do so, the sales assistance moved alongside her car and smashed the driver´s window with his fist.

According to evidence presented at the Circuit Civil Court, the glass from the driver´s window shattered and Trudy suffered cuts to her face, neck and back. She drove to the Beaumont Hospital in Dublin, where she was treated for her injuries.

After seeking legal advice, Trudy made a claim for compensation for injuries at a petrol station against Chopard International Ltd – trading as Castle Service Station. She claimed that the company were responsible for the negligent actions of the sales assistant.

Chopard International Ltd denied its liability for Trudy´s injuries, and alleged that the sales assistant was trying to prevent Trudy leaving the petrol station without paying, that she had trapped his hand in the driver´s window and that he had to break the glass to avoid being dragged down the road.

With liability being denied, the Injuries Board issued an authorisation for the case to be heard before Judge Francis Comerford at the Circuit Civil Court. The judge found in Trudy´s favour after the petrol station could not provide CCTV to support their claims and the sales assistant failed to appear.

Judge Comerford awarded Trudy €9,000 compensation for injuries at the petrol station, saying that Trudy did not have a distinctive scar as a result of her trauma.

Judge Awards almost €5 Million Injury Compensation for Accident with Bin Truck

A High Court judge has awarded a County Wicklow man almost €5 million injury compensation for an accident with a bin truck which left him permanently brain damaged.

On 23 April 2007, Padraig Hearns was having a night out in Dublin when he was attacked in Sycamore Street in the city´s Temple Bar area. As he lay on the road, he was run over by a Dublin City Council bin truck and suffered a fractured skull.

Padraig (39) from Hollywood in County Wicklow had to be put into an induced coma on arrival at hospital, and spent several months recovering from his injuries. Due to the brain damage he suffered in the accident Padraig – a former air steward for British Airways – will never be able to work again or live an independent life.

Through his parents Padraig made a claim against Dublin City Council to recover injury compensation for the accident with the bin truck. Dublin City Council denied its responsibility for Padraig´s injuries and said it was not the fault of the bin truck operators that Padraig had been attacked and was lying in the road.

The claim proceeded to the High Court, where it was heard before Mr Justice Michael Peart. Judge Peart found in Padraig´s favour after hearing that the local authority had broken its own by-laws by collecting rubbish in Temple Bar between the hours of 12:00pm and 6:00pm.

Judge Peart also considered that the operators of the bin truck had a duty of care to have one of their team outside of the truck as it moved on, in order to ensure it was safe to do so. The judge found that the bin truck operators had breached their duty of care by failing to see Padraig lying in the path of their vehicle.

The judge awarded Padraig €4,885,888 injury compensation for the accident with the bin truck which included €266,341 for loss of earnings, €155,230 for care costs to date, €350,000 for past and present pain and suffering and €3,485,000 for care costs in the future. Costs were awarded against Dublin City Council.

Judge Awards Woman 80% Compensation for a Fall in Dark Nightclub

A judge at the Circuit Civil Court has told a woman that she was 20% responsible for an accident at the Abberley Court Hotel in Dublin, and awarded her 80% compensation for a fall in a dark nightclub.

On 4th April 2010, Rita Walsh from Tallaght in Dublin had spent a pleasant evening with her daughters at the Level 4 Nightclub in the Abberley Court Hotel in Tallaght after enjoying a meal at a local Chinese restaurant. However, as the nightclub started to close, Rita tried to visit the bathroom and tripped over a step – badly injuring her shoulder when she fell.

Rita sought legal advice and claimed compensation for a fall in the dark nightclub – alleging that the management of the Level 4 Nightclub had turned out all the lights as the DJ finished, leaving the premises “pitch black”. The Abberley Court Hotel denied Rita´s allegations – arguing that the club had been fully illuminated during closing – and the case proceeded to court, where it was heard before Judge Alan Mahon.

In the hearing, Conor Murphy – a forensic engineer brought in to give an expert opinion on the lighting in the club – gave evidence that the overall lighting was inadequate to clearly identify the step in question, and that recessed lighting on the back of the step only made it visible from the direction opposite to that in which Rita was walking.

Judge Mahon accepted the forensic engineer´s evidence of the nightclub´s lighting as truthful, and said that although Rita´s allegations that the nightclub was “pitch black” were incorrect, it was also inaccurate that the management of the Level 4 Nightclub had illuminated the premises as the patrons were leaving, and more likely that the lights had been switched on only once Rita´s accident had occurred.

The judge also ruled that Rita must take 20% of the responsibility for her accident, as she admitted to having been drinking alcohol with her daughters at the nightclub and at the Chinese restaurant. He consequently reduced her compensation for a fall in a dark nightclub from €22,000 to €17,600.

Woman´s Claim for Scalp Irritation Compensation Resolved Out of Court

A woman, who developed an allergic reaction after a hair colouring treatment at her hairdressers, has resolved her claim for scalp irritation compensation out of court.

Thirty-three year old Dublin sales executiveGrainne Moynihan – made her claim for scalp irritation compensation following a haircut and hair colouring treatment on 11th November 2010 at the Dylan Bradshaw salon in Dublin.

Grainne alleged in the claim against the hairdresser that she developed an allergic reaction on her ears, neck and scalp which had manifested as an itchy and irritable rash after the visit to the William Street South salon.

In her claim for scalp irritation compensation, Grainne noted that she had to seek medical attention after the irritation developed, and that her doctor had prescribed her a course of oral steroids and antihistamine medication.

Coiffeur Salons Ltd, trading as Dylan Bradshaw, denied their liability for Grainne´s injury and the Injuries Board provided Grainne with an Authorisation to pursue her claim through the courts.

Coiffeur Salons Ltd entered a full defence against the claim which was scheduled to be heard at the Circuit Civil Court before Judge Matthew Deery.

However, before the hearing was due to start, Judge Deery was advised that the claim for scalp irritation had been settled out of court for an undisclosed amount and that the case could be struck off.

Acupuncture Injury Compensation Claim Resolved in Circuit Civil Court

A judge at the Circuit Civil Court in Dublin has resolved an acupuncture injury compensation claim, made by a UCD student who had volunteered to participate in a Chinese medicine training course.

Judge Jacqueline Linnane heard how, in April 2010, forty-five year old Bernadette Poleon from Dunboyne, County Meath, volunteered to participate in a training course in acupuncture that was being held at the Irish Institute of Traditional Chinese Medicine in Dublin.

During the training course, one of the exercises involved a student inserting needles below each of Bernadette´s eyes. After being inspected by the course supervisor, the needle below Bernadette´s right eye was repositioned but later in the day, the skin surrounding Bernadette´s left eye became tender and swollen.

Within two days significant bruising developed around Bernadette´s left eye and, although the tenderness and swelling disappeared a few days later, the discolouring around Bernadette´s eye lasted a further seven weeks. Bernadette also developed a sinus problem, for which she is still receiving treatment from her GP.

After seeking legal advice, Bernadette made an acupuncture injury compensation claim against Bellfield Consultants Ltd who are the owners of the Irish Institute of Traditional Chinese Medicine. Bellfield Consultants Ltd denied their responsibility for Bernadette´s eye injury and made a full defence against the acupuncture injury compensation claim when court proceedings were issued.

However, before the case was to be heard before Judge Jacqueline Linnane at the Circuit Civil Court, the judge was informed that – by consent – the case was now before her for the assessment of acupuncture injury compensation only.

After hearing how Bernadette´s injury was acquired, and the embarrassment she had felt when explaining how her injury was sustained while the black eye was still visible, the judge awarded Bernadette €6,000 in settlement of her acupuncture injury compensation claim and costs.

Court Approves Assessment of Bouncy Castle Accident Compensation

A judge at the Circuit Civil Court has approved an assessment of bouncy castle accident compensation for a seven-year-old-girl who was injured while visiting the Craggaunowen Living Past Experience.

The Injuries Board assessment had made in respect of a claim for bouncy castle accident compensation made on behalf of Aimee Turner from Kilmore in County Limerick by her mother – Rachel Cross – following the events of April 2010 when Aimee was struck in the face while playing on a bouncy castle situated in the grounds of the Craggaunowen Park.

A dental examination several days later revealed that damage to Aimee´s upper left central baby incisor tooth had caused bleeding in the crown of the tooth and Aimee was referred to consultant maxillofacial surgeon Michael Kilbride, who extracted the damaged tooth. It was determined that Aimee would be unlikely to suffer any permanent injury despite the tooth being removed eighteen months prematurely.

After seeking legal advice from a solicitor, Aimee´s mother made a claim for bouncy castle accident compensation against the owners of the Living Past Experience on the grounds that the activity area should have been supervised at the time of her daughter´s accident. The owners of the site acknowledged their liability for Aimee´s injury and an application for assessment of bouncy castle accident compensation was submitted to the Injuries Board.

At the Circuit Civil Court, Circuit Court president Mr Justice Raymond Groarke approved the assessment of the claim; which consisted of €5,000 compensation for pain and suffering Aimee experienced due to her tooth injury and €1,624 special damages for the costs incurred by Aimee´s mother in seeking dental treatment for her daughter and bringing the claim for bouncy castle accident compensation.

Baggage Handler Electric Shock Accident Claim Resolved Out of Court

An employee in the baggage handling section at Dublin Airport, who suffered two electric shocks when attempting to attach a power cable to a Boeing 737, has resolved his baggage handler electric shock accident claim out of court.

Patrick Kemmy (39) from Blanchardstown in Dublin made the electric shock at work compensation claim after suffering an injury while trying to connect the electric cable to the plane at Dublin Airport in April 2009. At first Mr Kemmy believed it was some aspect of the task that he had done incorrectly which led to the first electric shock, but on a second attempt he sustained an even larger shock.

The accident left Patrick suffering from a tingling down his right arm – which he still experiences from time to time  almost four years after the event – chest pains, headaches, a shortness of breath and neck pains. Due to the injuries suffered in the baggage handling accident, Patrick has missed work on nine or ten occasions.

Patrick alleged, in his compensation case, that his employers Servisair and the Dublin Airport Authority had permitted him to use a power cable which was not properly insulated against the ingress of water which, as it was raining on the day in question, led to the electrical accident.

Despite the Dublin Airport Authority and Servisair denying their liability for Patrick´s injuries at first shortly before the case was to be heard at the High Court, officials were advised that the claim had been resolved out of court.

How much Patrick received in his baggage handler electric shock accident claim was not revealed.

Baseball Injury Compensation Awarded to Boy

A young boy who suffered life changing injuries when he was struck by a baseball in a Little League game has been awarded 14.5 million dollars in baseball injury compensation.  

Steven Domalewski from Wayne, New Jersey, was just 12 years old when playing as a pitcher in a Police Athletic League baseball game in 2006. In a freak accident, the batter to who Steven threw the ball hit a firm line drive, which caused the ball to fly back at Steven at speed and strike him in the chest – putting him into cardiac arrest. By the time emergency services resuscitated him, Steven´s brain had been starved of oxygen for 15 minutes, due to which he sustained irreversible brain damage.

After seeking legal counsel, Steven’s family filed a claim for children’s sports injury compensation against Little League Baseball, the manufacturer of the metal baseball bat that had been used during the game and the retailer of the bat, alleging that it had been dangerous to use a metal bat in the game as metal bats can hit a baseball at a greater speed than wooden bats.

The family alleged that had a wooden bat been used in the game, Steven would not have suffered such severe injuries and supported their childrens sport injury claim with figures produced by Little League Baseball which revealed that since the performance of metal bats had been limited to those of the best wooden bats – a measure introduced in 2008 – injuries to Little League pitchers had fallen by 80 percent.

Little League Baseball, Hillerich and Bradsby – the makers of the “Louisville Slugger” – and the national retailer of the bat, Sports Authority, all denied liability for Stevens injuries but, at the State Superior Court in Passaic County, the judge heard that a settlement had been agreed upon which would see Steven receive 14.5 million dollars in childrens sport injury compensation to provide him with the specialist care he will require for the remainder of his life.

Low Hanging Poster Accident Claim Settled

A woman who walked into a Dublin advertising poster, and sustained head and neck injuries, has settled her compensation claim for low hanging poster accident for 38,000 Euros.

Sandra Memery (48)  was leaving her local MacDonald´s restaurant with her daughter on 16th September 2009 when the low hanging poster accident occurred. Having turned back towards her daughter to give her a bag, she started walking forward again, and immediately hit her head on the corner of the low hanging poster campaigning for Fianna Fail for a “Yes” vote in the second Lisbon Treaty referendum.

After feeling unwell for a day, Sandra visited her doctor, where she was diagnosed with cuts to her scalp, a swelling over her right temporal and soft tissue damage to her neck. Sandra, who is 5 ft 5 in tall (1.65m) made a compensation claim for low hanging poster accident compensation, stating that the campaign poster should have a minimum of three metres clearance from the floor.

Contesting the claim, Fianna Fail and Executive Posters Ltd jointly claimed that Sandra was responsible for her own injuries through contributory negligence and should have paid more attention to where she was going. However, shortly before Sandra´s case was about to be heard at Dublin´s Circuit Civil Court, her legal representatives announced to the court that a compensation settlement had been concurred upon in the amount of 38,000 Euros.

Eyebrow Wax Burn Compensation Claim Settlement for Girl

A teenage girl, who sustained a bad allergic reaction after a beauty salon treatment, has been awarded 1,000 pounds in settlement of her eyebrow wax burn claim for compensation.

The anonymous girl, who developed an allergic reaction to the eyebrow wax used in a treatment at the Crop Beauty Salon in October 2011, claimed in her action against the salon that it had failed to ensure that a safe product was used and as a result she sustained burns, swelling and redness to her eyebrows.

At the approval of her eyebrow wax burn compensation claim, the court heard how the girl returned home from the beauty salon with a headache and puffy eyes. She went directly to the Accident and Emergency Department of her local hospital where she was diagnosed with a severe allergic reaction.

The reaction lasted for three weeks, during which time the girl suffered severe pain which led to a loss of amenity. After seeking legal counsel, the teenager filed a claim for eyebrow wax burn injury compensation and, after reviewing the girl´s claim, the Crop Beauty Salon admitted liability.

A compensation settlement of 1,000 pounds was agreed uponcompensation for the girl´s eyebrow wax burn claim and, as the girl was under the age of eighteen, settlement of the claim was first approved by the court before the claim could be concluded.

Holiday Sun Lounger Injury Compensation For Irish Tourist

An Irish tourist, who suffered head and neck injuries when a poolside lounger collapsed while she was on it, has been awarded 38,000 Euros in holiday sun lounger injury compensation by a court in Dublin.

The Dublin Circuit Civil Court was told that Mary Lee (74) was enjoying a week´s hp;iday with her husband at the Hotel Galeazzi in Brescia, Italy, when the sun lounger on which she was reclining collapsed, causing Mary to fall to the floor and bashed her head on the concrete poolside.

As she sat in an upright poisiton, Mary felt disorientated and dizzy, and was immediately taken to the local hospital in Brescia where she was diagnosed with severe soft tissue injuries to her head, neck and spine. Mary was given painkilling tablets at the hospital, but continued to suffer from the pain of her injury and was bedbound for the remainder of her holiday.

On her return from the vacation, Mary visited her local GP and was prescribed stronger painkillers. Unfortunately the pains persisted in Mary´s neck and shoulders and she was not able to pursue a normal life. After advice of a legal nature, Mary made a claim for holiday sun lounger injury against the travel agents through which she had booked her holiday.

The travel company did not accept liability for the injuries Mary had suffered and sought to have the owners of the hotel brought into proceedings as third party defendants. However, at the judge  ruled in Mary´s favour and awarded her 38,000 Euros in holiday sun lounger injury compensation.

Bank Accident Injury Compensation Agreed out of Court

A lady who was struck on the head by a ceiling brick and a light fitting while at the counter of her local Barclays Bank has agreed to an out of court settlement of injury compensation for an accident in a bank.

The accident occurred to the Barclays´ customer in February 2011 as the woman reached the counter of the bank. A brick fell from the ceiling and hit the lady on her head. As she fell forward, a light fitting and more bricks dropped from the ceiling – hitting the woman at various locations across the neck and shoulders.

Although remaining conscious, the customer sustained a laceration to the top right-hand side of her head and bruising across her shoulders. Movement in her upper arms was restricted by a neck pain and soreness and, for some weeks, the woman – who was prescribed anti-inflammatory tablets along with paracetamol and amytriptyline – suffered from nausea and headaches.

After seeking legal guidance, the woman made an injury compensation claim for an accident in a bank against Barclays, claiming that the bank had breached statutory duty in failing to ensure that the premises were adequately maintained and structurally safe. After investigating the logistics of the accident, the bank accepted liability for the woman´s injuries and injury compensation for an accident in a bank amounting to 1,500 pounds was agreed between the two parties.

Tassimo Recall Likely to Lead to Burns Injury Compensation Claims

Claims for compensation for burns are likely to follow the recall of the Tassimo coffee maker in the United States and Canada, after the makers acknowledged that at least 160 cases of burn injuries and scalding were attributable to a design fault.

More than 1.7 million Tassimo coffee machines have been taken from store shelves in North America after the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) found that the machine´s T-disc – the plastic pot containing the coffee – could explode and shower bystanders with scalding water. Thirty-seven occurences of second-degree burns have been reported to the CPSC, including the case of a two-year-old girl who was hospitalised after suffering burns to her face.

The Tassimo coffee makers, which are still for in the UK, have been marketed worldwide since 2008, and the Tassimo coffee maker recall has been extended to include 4 million Gevalia, Maxwell House and Nabob espresso T-discs still believed to be in circulation in American grocery stores. The recalled discs are for sale in packets of eight and sixteen and, like the Tassimo coffee making machines, are still available in stores in the UK.

Compensation claims for Tassimo burns are likely to be made against BSH Home Appliances Corporation – the makers of the Tassimo coffee makers – who are located in Irvine, California. Burn injury compensation for a burn from a Tassimo coffee maker should also account for any permanent scarring resulting from a Tassimo coffee maker burn and – especially when a child has been scalded by a Tassimo coffee maker – consideration should be made for any ongoing psychological injury.

Ruined Holiday Cruise Compensation Award Offered

Holiday makers who were on the Costa Concordia cruise ship which capsized on January 13, 2012, after straying off-course and hitting a submerged rock have had 11,000 Euros (14,460 dollars/9,180 pounds) compensation for ruined cruise offered to them by Costa Crociere SpA – the Italian subsidiary of Carnival Cruises.

The offer of compensation for ruined cruise was made after negotiations between the company and consumer groups in Italy, and compensates any passenger who was saved from the stricken ship that did not suffer any physical injury. Those that did will be approached individually, according to the statement released by the cruise company.

The ruined cruise compensation award offercover the psychological trauma that passengers may have suffered on that disastrous evening in January, and for any personal effects they may have lost when the cruise ship sank. However, some consumer groups are not happy with the extent of the compensation offer, and are advising passengers aboard the ship to seek professional medical advice before accepting it.

Those of the 4,197 crew and passengers who do take the compensation for ruined cruise will get their money within seven days, however the offer comes with the proviso that acceptance disqualifies passengers from making future compensation claims for injuries against Costa Cruises or any of its associated companies.

Golf Injury Compensation Claim for Woman

A woman who was hit in the face by a badly struck golf ball as she was leaving her local golf course has been awarded 7,500 pounds in golf injury compensation.

Rachel Davis was walking back to her car after playing nine holes of golf at the Branston Golf and Country Club in Staffordshire when a golf ball struck her in the face, causing her to fall to the ground. The force of her fall caused damage to her teeth, cuts to her lips and bruising elsewhere on her body. Rachel received immediate medical treatment in hospital for her injuries but was forced to take the following week off of work.

After seeking legal counsel, Rachel made a claim for golf injury compensationagainst the Golf and Country Club. An investigation by East Staffordshire Borough Council was also begun, in which it was found that there were no warning signs in place to advise golfers of the hazard and that a fence which had been erected to prevent accidents of this nature was too low and in a state of disrepair

The Golf and Country Club was prosecuted by East Staffordshire Borough Council and was discovered to be in breach of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. The Club was fined 5,000 pounds with a further 3,515 in costs, while Rachel was awarded 7,500 pounds in golf injury compensation.

Poly Implant Prothese (PIP) Compensation Likely in the UK

Thousands of breast implant recall compensation claims could come from women worried about the Poly Implant Prothese (PIP) recall in the UK.

When the recall was first revealed in March 2010, the advice provided at the time by the French medical device regulatory authority AFSSAPS was for women who were concerned over their PIP breast implants to undergo an ultrasound scan to check for suspected ruptures of the implant sac.

Subsequently it was revealed that the recalled breast implants, which have a higher incidence of rupturing than is usual, also contained an unauthorised silicone gel which could cause an inflammatory reactions in certain women. Now health officials in France are informing all women who have received PIP recalled breast implants to have them removed.

Though the UK´s medicines watch dog – the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency – insists there is no risk of cancer from this lower grade silicone gel, one woman in France is known to have died due to anaplastic large cell lymphoma and many women in the UK have suffered unusual and painful symptoms once the silicone gel has secreted into their lymph nodes.

With the maker of the recalled breast implants having gone out of business since the recall, breast implant recall compensation claims are being directed against the clinics and surgeries which originally performed the breast implant operation – not only for the physical ailments caused by the ruptured implants, but for the emotional distress of suffered by the affected women who may not yet be aware of how badly their health has been affected.

Faulty Shoes Foot Injury Compensation Settled On

A man whose feet erupted in blisters due to the high irritant content in a new pair of shoes has settled his foot injury compensation claim against the makers in an out-of-court compensation settlement.

Chris Heleine (51) from Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, had bought the Sperry Top-Siders shoes from the Leeds branch of Hip Menswear in April 2009 before going on vacation to Spain. However, within hours of donning the shoes, his feet had erupted into big blisters and he was rushed to hospital.

Medical staff at the hospital in Menorca burst the blisters and drained the fluid that had collected underneath but, following the initial treatment, Chris had to return to the hospital each day for a week to have his dressing changed as the high humidity in Menorca could have resulted in both feet becoming infected.

On his return to the UK, Chris took legal guidance, and his solicitors arranged to have the chemical content of the shoes analysed. The results of the analysis showed unusually high levels of 2-Mercaptobenzothiazole – a classified irritant and the causing factor of Chris´ blisters.

Chris took a foot injury compensation claim against the manufacturers of the shoes – American company Collective Brands – and, after they carried out their own independent chemical analysis, the company admitted liability for Chris´ injuries and paid a four-figure sum in settlement of the foot injury compensation claim.

Fairground Injury Compensation Awarded to Young Girl

An unnamed 13-year old girl, who suffered bruising and abrasions after falling beneath a faulty fairground safety restraint bar, is to receive 750.00 pounds in personal injury compensation from the operator of the ride.

The girl had been at the Copmanthorpe Carnival in York, where she went on a ride called as the “Cliffhanger Miami Trip, where riders sit in a row and are taken up, down and round at speed. Soon after the ride began, her restraint bar became loose and the girl slipped underneath it – falling four metres onto a concrete surface and narrowly missing moving steelwork.

The girl was brought to nearby Selby Hospital suffering from bruising and abrasions and sent home after treatment. Following a Health and Safety Executive investigation into the incident, Terry Reynolds, 28, of Dewsbury, West Yorkshire, was found guilty of negligently operating the ride and in breach of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 by failing to take reasonable care of those affected by his work activities.

Selby Magistrates’ Court gave Reynolds a three-year conditional discharge and ordered him to pay £750 fairground injury compensation to the injured girl.

Hotel Bedbug Bite Compensation of 3,200 Pounds Awarded to Sisters

Two sisters, whose stay in London was ruined by the bites they received from bedbugs present in the bedding at their hotel, have each been awarded 1,600 pounds in compensation in an out-of-court settlement.

Melanie Carmen (59) from Whitstable, Kent, and Joy McDonagh (51) from Sidcup, Kent, stayed three nights in London at the Airways Hotel in Victoria in February 2010 to celebrate Joy´s 50th birthday. However, after their first night in the hotel, both were covered in bites from an infestation of bedbugs.

They reported the issue to hotel staff and requested that they were moved to another room. However, there were also bedbugs in the change of room and, after two further nights of poor sleep, the women had a total of 138 bites between them.

After seeking legal guidance, Melanie and Joy sued the Airways Hotel for personal injury compensation and without accepting liability, the hotel settled out of court – paying each 1,600 pounds to cover the women´s medical expenses and loss of earnings as they were unable to immediately return to work after their visit to London.