Personal Injury Compensation

Passenger Injury Compensation

If you are injured in an accident while travelling in a vehicle as a non-driver, it may be possible to claim passenger injury compensation. The most frequent claims for passenger injury compensation occur after a non-driver has been injured in a rear-end accident. It can often be the case that the passenger is entitled to a higher settlement of compensation for whiplash injuries because they do not have the split-second to brace before a collision that a driver has.

Passenger injury compensation claims can also be made if you are a pillion passenger on a motorbike that has been involved in an accident, if you are hurt while on a bus or train, or if you are injured due to the negligence of the driver you are travelling with in a car. This latter example of passenger injury compensation claims can be awkward if you are injured due to the negligence of a partner or a friend.

Claims for passenger injury compensation are processed through the Injuries Board. However, to ensure that you receive your maximum entitlement to passenger injury compensation, it is always in your best interests to prepare your application to the Injuries Board with the assistance of a solicitor. It is also advisable to refer any unsolicited offers of passenger injury compensation you may receive from the negligent party´s insurers to a solicitor as well.

To find out more about passenger injury compensation in Ireland, call our Legal Advice Centre and speak directly to an experienced solicitor. All call to our service are free and confidential, and you will not be under any obligation to proceed with a claim for passenger injury compensation once you have spoken with us.

€550,000 Brain Injury Compensation Settlement for Tram-Surfing Girl

October 22nd, 2018. By Compensation News.

A 20-year-old Dublin girl has been awarded €550,000 brain injury compensation in relation to an accident that occurred when she was ‘tram-surfing’.

In the legal action before the High Court, Ms Kelly had her settlement with Luas operators Veolia approved in relation to the accident which took place when she was 13-years-old.

Ms Kelly’s accident occurred at the Fatima Luas station on the Red Line in 2010 when, accompanied by a friend, she tried to jump on and hold onto the outside of Luas tram doors as it left the platform. Ms Kelly fell off the tram onto the tracks, striking her head on the ground. Her friends had to drag her out of the path of an approaching tram.

Ms Kelly, who recently gave birth to her first child, was legally represented by Bruce Antoniotti SC who told the High Court that the young lady admitted she was to blame for the accident and she confirmed she should not have been tram surfing. She went on to say that she knew that this was a very unsafe thing to do. The High Court was advised that Ms Kelly wished for no liability to be charged to the the Luas driver who was on duty at the time of the accident.

Via her mother Elizabeth Kelly, Ms Kelly (20) took the Luas injury compensation action against Veolia Transport Dublin Light Rail Ltd and Veolia Transport Ireland Ltd of St John Rogerson’s Quay, in relation to the accident that happened on September 3, 2010.

As part of the personal injury compensation action Ms Kelly claimed that there was a failure to have adequate visual systems implemented on the tram and that the driver had no clear vision of the non-platform side of the tram before leaving the station. The tram, it was claimed, left the platform without first observing the non-platform side of the tram.

Mr Justice Cross, in giving his approval to the Luas accident compensation settlement stated that Ms Kelly did not need to be informed that she had done something silly. However, he praised her for her honesty.

Rebecca’s sister Jennifer Kelly contacted 98FM’s Dublin earlier this week to say that Rebecca has become the victim of an online bullying campaign.

She said: “It’s unbelievable, the girl is afraid to leave her house. She has been getting threats and everything. Her Facebook has just been completely trolled. She hasn’t got a minute, to be completely honest. It is unbelievable the abuse she has gotten. The girl is constantly crying over this.”

Personal Injuries Commission Report Show Irish Whiplash Compensation Rates Higher than rest of Europe

December 19th, 2017. By Compensation News.

The rates of rate of whiplash injuries suffered in Ireland is, at present, much higher  than in most other European countries according a recent report from the Personal Injuries Commission (PIC).

The PIC was set up in early 2017 to look into personal injury compensation claims with a particular focus on the increases in soft tissue and whiplash compensation claims.

Car insurance costs went up by a staggering 70% in the three-year duration between 2013-16. It is though that fraudulent compensation claims to blame for this surge.

However, the PIC is of the opinion that establishing up an independent medical panel to review whiplash injuries would negatively affect a claimant’s rights, so it is steering clear from approving such a move.

Instead, it calls for the establishment of a uniform approach for medical staff treating whiplash injuries. There is, currently, no one accreditation required or benchmark standard for a doctor who wishes to complete a medico-legal report on a personal injury compensation claim in Ireland.  The report says that medics should adopt a standardised approach to diagnosing, treating and reporting on soft tissue injuries, of which the vast majority are connected to whiplash.

It recommended the implementation of the Quebec Task Force Whiplash Associated Disorder grading scale by medical professionals reporting on relevant injuries. This scales is formulated based on the severity of symptoms and associated physical factor. It says “Training and accreditation in soft tissue reporting is agreed as being the best practice requirement for those wishing to complete relevant reports”.

The thinking is that a self-testing factor by the injured party should also be implemented to review compensation claims.

The PIC is chaired by Judge Mr Nicholas Kearns who urged insurance companies to release some background details on the incidence of whiplash injuries in Ireland. This would form a key element of the National Claims Information Database that is  currently being put together by the Central Bank of Ireland.

Mr Justice Kearns also claimed that such dissemination of information on whiplash injuries would be for the betterment of the personal injuries compensation environment in Ireland by fostering ‘an objective standard’ for reviewing whiplash injuries. He went on to say that reports, in future, will look at comparative systems and bench marking compensation award levels from around the world.


Judge Adjourns Case of Girl Injured on Dublin Bus

May 21st, 2017. By Compensation News.

A judge has adjourned the case of a girl who sustained an injury to her eyebrow while travelling on Dublin bus so that further medical reports can be made.

A girl (who was twenty-two months old at the time of the incident) was travelling on a bus in Dublin with her mother in 2015 when the bus driver braked suddenly to avoid an unmarked garda car that had pulled out into a bus lane. Although strapped into her buggy, the girl hit her head on one of the poles in the bus.

The girl was taken to Temple Street Children´s Hospital by her mother to receive medical attention. The girl had sustained a cut on her foreheard, which was cleaned and sealed with seristrips. It is possible that the girl´s eyebrow hair will not develop normally as she gets older, and a very faint scar remains in the area.

As she was a minor at the time of the incident, her mother made a claim for compensation for an eyebrow injury on the girl’s behalf. The defendants-Dublin Bus and the Garda Commissioner-accepted liability for the injury, and a settlement of compensation amounting to €10,000 was offered to the family.

As the claim for compensation for an eyebrow injury had been made on behalf of a minor, the proposed settlement had to be approved by a judge to deem it fair before it could be finalised. The case was heard at the Circuit Civil Court last week, by Mr Justice Raymond Groarke. The judge was told the circumstances of the accident and the consequences of the injury.

Judge Groarke inspected the young girl´s eyebrow and said he could still see a visible scar. He commented that, as it was difficult to tell if the girl had made a complete recovery, he was reluctant to approve the settlement at this stage. He adjourned the approval hearing for six weeks in order that a medical report could be prepared on how the injury may interfere with the growth of the girl´s eyebrow hair in the future. The case is thus ongoing.

Settlement of Luas Injury Compensation Approved in Court

April 2nd, 2015. By Compensation News.

A €25,000 settlement of Luas injury compensation has been approved for a schoolgirl from Dublin who was hurt in an accident seven years ago.

Aoife Heron from Raheny in Dublin was hurt in the accident on 14th February 2008 when she, her mother and her younger sister were boarding a Luas at Connelly Street with the intention of travelling to Jervis Street.

Aoife – who was only six years of age at the time – boarded the Luas ahead of her mother Elaine; but, as Elaine started to push the buggy containing her younger child onto the Luas, the automatic doors closed – trapping the buggy between them.

Due to there being a blockage, the doors automatically opened, and Elaine was able to retract the buggy. Aoife, who was still inside the train, went to join her mother and sister on the platform; but as she tried to disembark, the automatic doors closed once again – on this occasion trapping the little girl´s head between them.

An ambulance was called, and Aoife was treated at the scene for a head injury by paramedics. A later examination by the family´s GP determined that Aoife had suffered a soft tissue injury and significant bruising. Seven years later, and Aoife has a scar on her head and has developed a phobia about travelling on the Luas.

Through her mother, Aoife made a Luas injury compensation claim against Veolia Transport Dublin Light Rail Ltd – the operators of the Luas. In the claim it was alleged that Veolia had been negligent and in breach of duty. Veolia initially denied its liability for Aoife´s Luas injury and prepared a full defence to contest the claim.

However, after a period of negotiation between solicitors representing the two parties, a €25,000 settlement of Aoife´s Luas injury compensation claim was agreed – the settlement having to be first approved by a judge as Aoife is legally a minor.

Consequently the details of the accident and Aoife´s injury were told to Mr Justice Raymond Groarke at the Circuit Civil Court in Dublin. Judge Groarke heard that Aoife may need psychotherapy in the future to overcome her phobia about travelling on the Luas, and the judge approved the settlement of Luas injury compensation – wishing Aoife all the best for the future.

Judge Approves Settlement of Compensation for Passenger in Car Accident

February 13th, 2014. By Compensation News.

A High Court judge has approved a settlement of compensation for a passenger in a car accident for thirty-two year old woman who was left with devastating injuries from a crash in 2010.

Ms Justice Mary Irvine heard how Lydia Branley from Kinlough, Country Leitrim, suffered devastating injuries when the driver of a BMW Coupe she was travelling in as a passenger lost control of the car, which then went through two crash barriers, hit a telegraph pole, and landed upside down in a stream.

The accident – which happened on the N4 at the Ballisodare slip road – occurred at a speed of 150km/hour in September 2010; and, due to the impact with the telegraph pole, the driver and a second male passenger were thrown clear from the car.

However Lydia – who had been wearing a seatbelt – had to be cut free from the wreckage of the car and was taken unconscious by ambulance to Sligo General Hospital; from where she was later transferred in a coma to the Beaumont Hospital in Dublin.

When Lydia woke from the coma nine months later, she was horrified to discover that she was unable to use her arms and legs, speak or feed herself. She now needs constant assistance with everyday tasks, despite her brain still being completely active.

The driver of the BMW – Martin Kearney from Balinoo in County Mayo – was subsequently convicted of dangerous driving causing serious harm, given a six-year prison sentence and banned from driving for twenty years.

Through her father, Lydia claimed injury compensation for a passenger in a car accident from Kearney and the owner of the car – Kearney´s father – and a settlement of €10 million was agreed between the parties.

Due to Lydia´s inability to communicate, the settlement of compensation for a passenger in a car accident had to be approved by a judge – which is how Ms Justice Mary Irvine came to be told of the circumstances of the accident and Lydia´s injuries.

The judge approved the settlement, adding “It does not give back Lydia her life. Nothing will, but it will provide her with the best care and hopefully bring back a degree of normality.”

Man Resolves Injury Claim for Accident in Dublin Airport after Hearing

December 6th, 2013. By Compensation News.

A man, who suffered a broken nose and two black eyes when an electric door closed on him, has resolved his injury claim for an accident in Dublin Airport after a hearing at the Circuit Civil Court.

Sixty-three year old Thomas Smyth and his wife, Evelyn, were at Dublin Airport in January 2011 to catch a flight for a vacation in Tenerife, and were walking through the gate to board their plane, when an automatically-timed door shut suddenly on Thomas´ face.

Thomas, from County Cavan, was taken to Beaumont Hospital in Dublin, where he was diagnosed with a broken nose and received treatment for other facial injuries. Having missed their flight, the couple returned home to re-schedule their holiday for a few days later.

However, because of the injuries Thomas had sustained, the holiday was ruined; and, when the couple returned to Ireland, they sought legal advice and made an injury claim for an accident in Dublin Airport against Aer Lingus – the company they had flown with – and the Dublin Airport Authority.

Both defendants agreed that Thomas had sustained injuries due to negligence, but neither party was willing to admit liability. Damages were assessed for €19,000, but the case was heard by Judge Jacqueline Linnane to establish which of the two defendants – if not both – were liable for Thomas´ injuries.

Judge Linnane found that Aer Lingus had been negligent on the grounds that the door which had automatically closed on Thomas was working properly, but it had been timed to close 30 minutes after it had been opened by an Aer Lingus flight attendant.

The judge said that if Aer Lingus needed longer than 30 minutes to get their passengers boarded, they should have requested a time extension from Dublin Airport Authority. She ordered that Aer Lingus pay the €19,000 compensation in settlement of Thomas´ injury claim for an accident in Dublin Airport.

Compensation Claim Against Ryanair Settled Before Hearing

October 6th, 2012. By Compensation News.

A female, who suffered cuts and bruises after falling down the steps of a Ryanair airplane, has settled her Ryanair injury compensation claim shortly before a hearing into her case was about to commence.

Malgorzata Jeneralczyk (57), from Poznan, Poland, fell on the mobile steps due to wet weather as she was disembarking from her flight at Dublin airport and fell to the tarmac below.

She was treated by an airport paramedic who recorded her injuries as a laceration to her left eyebrow and bruising to her left shoulder and ribs and her right hand and fingers.

After seeking legal counsel, Malgorzata made a claim for injury compensation against Ryanair – alleging that the company had failed in its duty of care to provide passengers with safe transit. Ryanair argued her claim for 38,000 Euros and were prepared to defend the company´s position in a court hearing.

However, just before the hearing was scheduled to begin, the Circuit Civil Court in Dublin heard that Malgorzata had settled her Ryanair injury compensation claim for an undisclosed amount and that costs were to be charged to Ryanair.

Judge Orders CCTV Release in Dublin Bus Crash Compensation Claim

April 13th, 2012. By Compensation News.

A judge in Dublin´s High Court has ruled that Dublin´s bus company must release CCTV footage to solicitors representing a claimant in a Dublin Bus injury claim.

The judgement was made by Mr Justice John Hedigan after years of stalling by the bus company and decisions made in the claimant´s favour by the Data Protection Commissioner and Judge Jacqueline Linnane in the Circuit Civil Court. The bus company had argued that the data they possessed about the claimant was privileged and, as potential evidence in litigation, they were not prepared to release it.

The Dublin Bus crash compensaton claim first started in October 2009, when a female claimant from Dublin alleged that she had sustained an injury aboard a Dublin Bus the previous year. Dublin Bus did not accept liability for the woman´s injuries and the Injuries Board Ireland declined to assess her application for Dublin Bus injury compensation.

While preparing for court proceedings, the claimant´s solicitors were advised of the existence of CCTV footage taken aboard the bus and were shown a video relating to their client´s claim for Dublin Bus injury compensation at Dublin Bus´s office. A request for a copy of the video was refused and, even after the claimant´s solicitors had complained to the Data Protection Commissioner, Dublin Bus continued to withhold the CCTV footage.

Dublin Bus appealed the Data Protection Commissioner´s decision to release the video and brought their case to the Circuit Civil Court. However, in July 2011, Judge Jacqueline Linnane ruled that the bus company should release the video to the solicitors on the grounds that the claimant had every right by law to request access to the CCTV footage in support of her Dublin Bus crash compsenation claim and that Dublin Bus had no right to withhold it.

Dublin Bus then opted to delay a resolution to the claim for Dublin Bus injury compensation by appealing Judge Linnane´s decision to the High Court, but Mr Justice John Hedigan found in favour of the claimant, stating that that Dublin Bus had “not raised a point of law giving rise to grounds for overturning Judge Linnane’s decision”.

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