Personal Injury Compensation

Archive for November, 2012

Assault Victim Settlement Approved in Court

November 12th, 2012. By Compensation News.

A man, who was left brain damaged and in need of 24-hour care following an assault by his girlfriend, has had an assault victim settlement of 3.84 million Euros approved at the High Court.

Mr Justice Nicholas Kearns was told how Jason Clarke (now 43) from Glencullen, Dublin, had been attacked by his then girlfriend – Jennifer Mayberry (33) of Foxrock, Dublin – after an argument had started between the two at the Blue Light pub on New Year´s Eve 2000.

The court was told that Ms Mayberry had thrown a bottle at Jason´s head; the impact of which caused a blood vessel to burst in his brain and initiate three strokes in quick succession. Jason lost consciousness in the third stroke – from which he did not recover for three months – and is now restricted to a wheelchair, requiring 24-hour care which is currently provided by his family.

Ms Mayberry was arrested after the event and charged with assault – to which she pleaded guilty and was handed a suspended jail sentence – and, in 2002, Jason filed a claim to the Criminal Injuries Compensation Tribunal who awarded him 3.84 million Euros from which to date his family have received just over 1 million Euros in interim compensation payments.

At the High Court, Jason´s father Frank Clarke – through whom the claim for criminal injuries compensation had been made – asked Mr Justice Nicholas Kearns to approve the full award and make Jason a ward of court as he believed the settlement was insufficient to provide Jason with the care he needed when his family were no longer able to look after him.

Mr Justice Nicholas Kearns stated it was a sensible decision as, if the case was to go before a new tribunal, there would be no guarantee that the award would be so high. The judge approved the settlement of assault victim compensation and noted that Jason may require more money to provide for his care in the future.

Compensation for Delayed Hospital Treatment Approved in Court

November 10th, 2012. By Compensation News.

A settlement of compensation for delayed hospital treatment has been approved at the High Court in the case of Brid Courtney – two years after the brain damaged child was originally awarded an interim payment.

Brid, who is now nine years of age and comes from Ardfert in County Kerry, was born in Tralee General Hospital in February 2003 suffering from brain damage after medical workers at the hospital allegedly failed to act on a sudden and dramatic change in the foetal heart rate pattern.

As a consequence of the drop in heart beat, Brid suffered perinatal asphyxia in the womb and due to the oxygen starvation is now confined to a wheelchair from which she has to be lifted bodily. She is also unable to speak and must rely on the use of her eyes and facial expressions to communicate with her family.

Following a claim for injury due to delayed hospital action taken through her mother – Deirdre – the Health Service Executive agreed to settle the claim without an admission of liability and, in November 2010, Mr Justice John Quirke approved an interim payment of 2 million Euros and adjourned the case for two years to allow for the introduction of periodic payments.

However, a system for periodic compensation payments for catastrophic injuries has still not been passed by government and – two years after the initial payment of compensation for delayed hospital action was approved – the case returned before the court for the approval of a final settlement.

At the High Court, Ms Justice Mary Irvine was shown testimony from experts that a further 9 million Euros in compensation for delayed hospital action would be required to provide adequate care for Brid through the remainder of her expected life and, as both Brid´s mother and the Health Service Executive agreed with the expert´s assessment, Ms Justice Mary Irvine approved the settlement.

Wrong Prescription Leads to Woman’s Death

November 8th, 2012. By Compensation News.

An inquest has told how a Dublin woman died two days after being given the wrong prescription by one of the city´s pharmacies.

Margaret Swaine (64) passed away due to a heart attack in July 2010 after being mistakenly dispensed Tegretol – an anti-convulsant and mood stabilising drug – instead of Trentol, a drug which had been prescribed for Margaret to assist the flow of blood through her body due to a pre-existing heart condition.

The Coroners Court was told Dr Brian Farrell testify that Margaret´s death was due to her heart condition, but the effects of the Tegretol had constituted an “additional stressor”. His proof was supported by University College Dublin´s Professor Patrick Murray, who confirmed that the presence of Tegretol had been a contributing factor to Margaret´s heart attack and said “It is very unlikely that she would have passed away on that given day had she not taken the Tegretol.”

The court was also told the circumstances surrounding how Margaret was dispensed the wrong medicine. Margaret´s friend – Ann Murphy – related how Margaret had come home from the Janet Dillon Pharmacy in Stoneybatter with the tablets which Ann believed were for the treatment of depression. Margaret took the Tegretol tablets three times over the course of the day and became groggy, disorientated and unstable on her feet.

Ann visited the pharmacy and showed the box of tablets to pharmacist Janet Dillon, who was alarmed that the pharmacy had dispensed the wrong medicine and who exchanged the Tegretol for the correct medicine. However, Margaret´s symptoms persisted and the following morning she was discovered sitting on the side of her bed having difficulty breathing. White foam was coming from her mouth and her pulse had slowed. An ambulance was called but attempts to resuscitate Margaret at the Mater Hospital failed.

In court, Janet Dillon stated that a “picking error” by a trainee assistant had been the reason why the wrong medicine was dispensed, but that she checked the medicine before it was dispensed to Margaret and her failure to spot the mistake was attributable to human error. The DPP has decided not to prosecute the pharmacy, but Margaret´s family may be entitled to claim compensation for being dispensed the wrong medicine.

Assault Compensation Made Following Neighbour Attack

November 5th, 2012. By Compensation News.

The Circuit Civil Court has awarded a man, who was struck in the face by his neighbour, assault compensation for a scar following an assault in the amount of 9,000 Euros.

Mr Justice Matthew Deery was told that Andrew McDermott (48) of Walkinstown, Dublin, had answered the front door to his neighbour – Barry Matthews – in July 2009; only for Matthews to punch Andrew McDermott in the face in response to allegations McDermott had made relating to bullying between their two sons.

The court was informed that McDermott was detained in hospital overnight and had six stitches inserted into a 1.5cm laceration on his lip. When the stitches weretaken out, a scar had developed which was visible to the casual onlooker and which – it was claimed in court – had made a significant difference to McDermott´s quality of life.

Mr Justice Matthew Deery was also informed that liability had been accepted in the claim and that the case was before him for the assessment of compensation for a scar following an assault. Stating that it had been a very unfortunate incident, the judge awarded McDermott 9,000 Euros assault compensation against his neighbour.

Hen Weekend Accident Compensation Awarded to Karting Accident Victim

November 5th, 2012. By Compensation News.

A woman, who sustained neck injuries after a crash on a go-karting track, has been awarded more than 9,000 Euros in go-karting accident compensation at the Circuit Civil Court.

Karen Wimpory (31) from Maidenhead in Berkshire was visiting Dublin in March 2009 with friends on a hen weekend celebration whenshe and her friends decided to try their hand at go-kart racing at Kylemore Indoor Karting racetrack.

Having agreed to a disclaimer which carried a warning that motor sport could be dangerous and “in the absence of any negligence on the part of the company” she was participating entirely at her own risk, Karen watched a safety video before climbing into her go-kart for a four-circuit warm-up.

It was at the end of this warm-up, Karen stated, that she and other racers had been forced to brake abruptly because a race marshal had stepped on to the track. Although Karen was able to stop in time, another driver bumped into the back of her kart, pushing her neck and shoulders backwards and leaving with neck injuries similar to whiplash.

After seeking legal counsel, Karen made a claim for go-karting accident compensation against Grovepark Services Ltd., which trades as Kylemore Karting, alleging that her neck injuries were attributable to the negligence of the company. Grovepark Services denied that they were liable and the claim went to court.

At the Circuit Civil Court, Mr Justice Matthew Deery was informed that although Karen had watch the safety video and signed the disclaimer before commencing her warm-up, there had been no instruction given about what to do when traffic warning lights on the racetrack were illuminated.

Judge Deery was also informed by racetrack designer Stewart Cosgrave and race controller Denis Gaffney that, although it was improbable that a race marshal would walk onto the circuit in front of karts travelling in excess of 20 miles per hour, the marshal in question had since died in a road traffic accident and would be unable to provide evidence.

After hearing evidence from forensic engineer Pat Cullerton that the karts did not have sufficent headrests or neck restraints fitted, and that novice karters should have also been instructed to sit at full extension when driving, Mr Justice Matthew Deery found in Karen´s favour and awarded her 9,064 Euros in go-karting accident compensation plus costs.

Child’s Compensation Fund Access Denied by Judge

November 2nd, 2012. By Compensation News.

A District Court judge has turned down  a request to access court-held injury compensation, insisting that a child’s compensation funds should not be used for family expenses.

Judge Mary Collins decreed that funds held by the court on behalf of four-year-old Oluwatimileyin Olaleye, who was awarded 4,500 Euros following a traffic accident in 2010, should not be released in order that the family could purchase a new car.

The boy’s father, Ibrahim Olaleye, from Lucan, County Dublin, had asked for the court for the release of 1,500 Euros from his son’s award in order to buy a car for the family. However, Judge Mary Collins refused to free any money from the boy’s court account, saying that child’s compensation fund had never been meant for the purchase of a car or any other family expense.

Oluwatimileyin had been awarded the compensation last year for injuries he sustained in a car crash in which his mother, Veronica, had been the driver. The award of 4,500 Euros had been approved in court after a compensation claim had been filed by Oluwatimileyin through his father, but Judge Mary Collins said the money was to remain in court until Oluwatimileyin was 18; at which time it would be released to him with any interest gained.

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