Employee Compensated for Fall at Workplace

A former worker at a sewerage plant has been awarded compensation for slipping at work, though was assigned partial liability.

The accident occurred on the 3rd February 2010, when the man – who was working as a maintenance engineer at the sewerage plant in Co. Tipperary – slipped on sewerage. The sewerage had come from flumes surrounding inlet channels, which had overflown.

The slip left the employee with a back injury that prevented him from returning to work. Though he applied to the Injuries Board Ireland for assessment, the Templemore Town Council – who run the sewerage facility – refused to give consent for an investigation.

As such, the man was given authorisation by the Injuries Board to pursue his claim in court. The liability hearing was held at the High Court in Dublin last week, where Mr Justice Raymond Fullam oversaw proceedings.

Judge Fullam was told that whilst the man worked at the sewerage plant – which has since been decommissioned – he was responsible for cleaning the flumes and ensuring that the paths were safe to walk on.

The judge agreed with representatives of the council, who argued that the employee should take some responsibility for the accident. However, he also accepted that there was a problem with the pumps and that there was not sufficient time to clear the path.

In the end, the employee was awarded a €70,000 settlement for his work injury. However, this was reduced by 40% after the judge assigned contributory negligence to the former maintenance engineer, resulting in a final settlement of €47,400.

Compensation Settlement for Fractured Leg at Play School Deemed Inadequate

A judge in Dublin’s Circuit Court has ordered a claim for compensation made on behalf of a young girl who fractured her leg whilst at play school to go to a full hearing.

The accident occurred in April 2015, when the child in question was just three years old. Whilst playing at the Larkin Early Education Centre in Ballybough, Dublin, the child climbed on top of a wardrobe and fell. The child was rushed to hospital where an X-ray revealed that she had t fractured a tibia. A surgery was required to reset the bone.

After she was discharged from hospital, the young girl had to wear a full leg cast. After this was removed, she continued to wear a protective boot. However, two years on and the little girl has not fully recovered, complaining of pains in her leg where the fracture occurred. Her mother, acting on her behalf, made a claim for personal injury compensation against the Larkin Early Education Centre.

The claim for compensation was first assessed by the Injuries Board, and after this was complete the play school made an offer of compensation of €31,000. Acting on their solicitor’s advice, the girl’s mother refused the offer and as there were no further offers the case proceeded to the Circuit Civil Court.

The hearing, overseen by Mr Justice Raymond Groarke, occurred earlier this month. The judge was detailed the circumstances of the accident and how the injury has affected the little girl. Judge Groarke agreed that the settlement offered by the play school was not adequate for the nature of the injury sustained.

The Book of Quantum, which has recently been revised, says that the minimum compensation to be awarded for a fracture with a displaced bone is €40,500. Additionally, injuries to the tibia are more serious than those for the tibia, and as the girl still suffers from the injury two years later, the compensation should be higher than the minimum.

Child Injury Settlement Approved by Judge

A child’s compensation settlement for an injury to his finger has been approved by a Circuit Court Judge.

The accident occurred in November 2011, when the boy in question was just sixteen months old. The boy cut his finger on the base of a fireplace purchased at B&Q. His parents rushed him to the Accident and Emergency Department of Crumlin Hospital, where he was diagnosed with a severed tendon. Another tendon in the finger was injured, as well as some blood vessels and a nerve.

The child had to undergo surgery – requiring general anaesthetic – to repair the damage. After he was discharged from the hospital, the toddler had to wear a cast. Five years later, the only sign of the injury is a scar which is expected to disappear as he grows up. He does not suffer from any residual pain.

Acting on the child’s behalf, the boy’s father sought legal counsel and made a claim for compensation against B&Q, as well as Focal Point Fires of London. In the claim, he alleged that they  negligent in the manufacture of the fireplace. The two companies admitted liability for the injury and offered to pay €30,000 in compensation.

The family’s solicitors advised them to accept the settlement. However, as the claim was made on behalf of a child, it had to be approved by a judge. The case proceeded to the Circuit Court, where it was heard by Judge James O’Donohoe.

At the hearing, the family’s legal representatives told the judge of the accident and the nature of the injury sustained by the boy. Judge O’Donohoe was also told that the child had recovered use of his hand and that there was little chance of permanent scarring. He proceeded to approve the settlement.

High Court Approves Surgical Negligence Settlement

The High Court of Dublin has approved a €7.1 million settlement of compensation for a man who was left severely paralysed after he was deprived of oxygen during a surgery.

The patient in question, who has remained anonymous throughout proceedings though is known to be forty-six years old and an ex-barrister, attended the Sports Surgery Clinic in Santry, Dublin, with pains in his back. The patient then elected to have voluntary surgery in the hope of relieving the pain. This surgery was carried out in 2014, and though the spinal surgery was considered a success, it transpired that the patient had been deprived of oxygen during the procedure.

During the surgery, the patient’s anaesthetic was not adequately administered and as a result his brain was deprived of oxygen. Since then, he has been reliant on round-the-clock care in a residential care home. He is able to respond to some external stimuli, such as the presence of his children, though has very limited communication otherwise. His family hope that, in the future, he will be able to return to live with them in Clonee, Co. Meath.

The patient’s wife made a claim for medical negligence compensation on his behalf against Deirdre Lohan, the anaesthetist who acted negligently during the procedure. Though Lohan initially contested any allegations of liability, the parties eventually negotiated a compensation settlement of €7.1 million. As it was made on behalf of a claimant unable to represent themselves in court, before the settlement could be paid it first needed to be approved by a judge in the High Court.

Earlier this month, Mr Justice Kevin Cross oversaw proceedings at the approval hearing. After hearing that the costs of the patient’s care were being supported by a trust fund established by his friends and former colleagues, Judge Cross heard that the patient’s wife was happy to accept the settlement, as she wanted the distress of the legal proceedings behind her.

Judge Cross approved the seven-figure settlement for medical negligence and offered his own sympathies towards the family.

Court Approved Settlement for Child’s Fall from Window

A judge in Dublin’s Circuit Court has approved the five-figure settlement of compensation made to a five year-old for injuries she sustained by falling out of a window.

The accident happened at a property in Blackrock, Dublin, when fifteen-month-old Róisín Byrne fell from a window onto a fire escape below. The little girl sustained severe injuries to her head and torso because of the elven-foot fall, including fractured ribs and a punctured lung. Róisín, now five, has since recovered, though still bears a scar on her head.

The window from which she fell, a Georgian sash window, was a known hazard by her parents Chloe Murphy and Ronan Byrne, as it does not open far from the ground. With their small child in mind, they requested that the caretaker of the property install a lock to prevent any accidents, though this was never done.

Chloe, acting on her daughter’s behalf, sought legal advice and then made a claim for assessment with the Injuries Board Ireland. Enda Woods, who owns the property, consented to the assessment, which valued the claim for compensation – based upon Chloe’s injuries – at €46,000.

This value was agreed to be fair by both parties, though before it could be awarded, it had to be approved by a judge to ensure that it was in Róisín’s best interests. The claim was then heard at the Circuit Court, as its value exceeded €15,000.

Mr Justice Raymond Groarke heard details of Róisín’s accident and approved the settlement for personal injury compensation.The settlement will be paid into court funds until Róisín’s eighteenth birthday.

Revised Book of Quantum to be Introduced to Irish Courts

A new Book of Quantum is to be introduced to Irish courts in the next few weeks, updating an outdated system.

The Book of Quantum is a reference text that is used by judges to assess how much compensation an injured party is entitled to if he or she was hurt in an accident that was not their fault. It is quite comprehensive, considering a series of physical injuries and assigning an estimated value for their compensation, based upon severity and long-term effects.

The publication was first used in 2004, though in recent years it has been criticised by the courts, who claim that it is outdated. In some instances, judges and solicitors have found it best to ignore the publication as they feel it would result in an unjust settlement. If they choose to follow the Book, they will often use the highest value available when calculating settlements. As a result, settlements awarded are often inconsistent.

Ireland’s most senior judges have been discussing the publication of a new book with the Courts Services and Injuries Board Ireland. After analysing around 52,000 claims made in Ireland between 2013 and 2014, they drew up a new Book of Quantum that is due to be published in the coming months. Representatives have commented that they hope the new book will bring greater consistency to the compensation settlements awarded in Ireland.

The Book has been updated such that the financial values awarded based on the physical injuries reflect the current cost of living, and also have more subcategories for severity and permanence. This allows judges, insurance companies and the Injuries Board to award more accurate and fair settlements.

There are, of course, other factors that will determine how much compensation is awarded. The Book of Quantum accounts for physical injuries, but one claiming for personal injuries compensation may also be able to claim for emotional damage, financial loss and affected quality of life.

 

Child Injury Compensation Settlement Approved

A twelve year-old boy, who was injured at his creche in 2007, has received a settlement of compensation for his injury and resulting scar.

The accident occurred in July 2007 when Calum Lawless, then aged three, was playing in the Happy Days Creche, Dublin. As he was playing, he tripped on uneven flooring and injured his face. Calum, who was bleeding heavily from a cut above his right eye, was taken to the VHI Swiftcare Clinic at Dublin City University. There, his wound – three centimetres long – was closed with steri-strips.

For a week after the accident, Calum was unable to open his eye, and the area was bruised for many months. Calum, now aged twelve, has a permanent scar so close to his eye that it cannot be corrected by plastic surgery.

Calum’s mother, Lorraine Lawless, consulted a solicitor and proceeded to make a claim for personal injury compensation on behalf of her son. The claim, made against the Happy Days Creche, alleged that by failing to provide a safe environment in which Calum could play, they had breached their duty of care.

The care facility conceded liability for Calum’s injuries, offering a settlement of compensation worth €45,000. Before this could be awarded, however, it had to be approved by a judge.

The case proceeded to Dublin’s Circuit Civil Court, where Judge James O’Donohoe heard the circumstances of Calum’s accident. He then proceeded to approve the settlement of compensation, which was then awarded to Calum.

Teenager Awarded Compensation for Childhood Holiday Accident

Dublin’s High Court have approved a six-figure settlement for a teenage girl who hurt her leg on a nail when holidaying with her family.

The accident occurred when Shauna Burke, aged just ten, was on holiday with her family at the Slattery Caravan Park in Co. Clare in August 2009. As she was playing with her friends, Shauna cut open her leg on a nail that was projecting from a pole.

The nail caused a deep laceration just above Shauna’s knee which – despite medical attention – has left a large, visible scar. Acting on his daughter’s behalf, John Burke made a claim for personal injury compensation against Austin Francis Slattery, the owners of the caravan park.

In the claim, it was alleged that Slattery was aware of the hazard the nail posed as it was on a pole in an area that was popular with residents of the park. However, Slattery denied that he was liable for Shauna’s injury, though still made an offer of €106,000 to compensate for Shauna’s injury and costs of medical care.

However, this settlement offer could not be immediately accepted as it was made on behalf of a minor. As such, the case proceeded to the High Court in Dublin, where it was overseen by Mr Justice Anthony Barr.
During the hearing, Shauna’s legal team detailed the nature of the accident and subsequent injuries on Shauna’s health and wellbeing. Judge Barr – after inspecting the scar on Shauna’s leg – approved the settlement, which will be held in court fund until Shauna is eighteen.

Hearing Conducted for Cancer Missed Diagnosis

Dublin’s High Court have heard the details of a claim made by a woman who underwent unnecessary surgery after doctors failed to diagnose her with breast cancer.

Eileen Fennessy, a sixty-nine year-old retiree – made the claim for medical negligence compensation after the National Breast Screening Programme, “Breast Check”, failed to see potential symptoms of cancer in a scan taken on in November 2011.

Eileen, who worked as a schoolteacher in Co. Kilkenny, was diagnosed with breast cancer nearly a year after that scan. Her GP had found a large mass on her breast, which lead to a referral to Waterford Regional Hospital. There, an ultrasound and biopsy were carried out, showing that Eileen had a Grade 2 carcinoma.

As soon as the diagnosis was made, Eileen was put on a course of chemotherapy. Regrettably, this did nothing to clear the cancer and in April 2013, Eileen’s right breast was removed. After her recovery, the retired schoolteacher sought legal counsel before proceeding to make a claim for her cancer misdiagnosis against the Health Service Executives (HSE).

In her claim, Eileen alleged that had the Breast Check programme correctly identified her breast cancer in 2011, the subsequent chemotherapy and mastectomy would not have been needed.

The case proceeded to the High Court, where Mr Justice Kevin Cross oversaw proceedings. Eileen’s barrister told the court that the original mammogram should have indicated to medical staff that Eileen required further examinations. However, the failure of the staff to notice the warning signals meant that Eileen was put in danger as the cancer worsened.

Eileen has since been declared cancer-free, though the judge was told that the underlying diagnosis is “extremely serious and devastating”. The HSE has continued to deny that they were negligent, and the case will continue in the High Court later this week.

High Settlement for Sports Injuries Approved by Judge

A revised settlement for sports injury compensation has been approved by a Circuit Court judge on behalf of a teenager who rejected the initial offer of compensation.

Rhian Holohan, then aged fifteen from Co. Meath, was playing a game of soccer in June 2012 when the accident occurred. The game, played between Kenstown Rovers FC and Ayrfield United, was part of the Dublin Women’s Soccer League.

Rhian was acting as goal keeper for the match and, as she dived to obstruct the ball, she gashed her knee on a piece of broken glass that was on the grass. Rhian received emergency first aid before she was taken to Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital in Drogheda for further treatment.

In Accident and Emergency, Rhian’s knee was stitched and cleaned under local anaesthetic. The laceration was very deep, and as such Rhian had to use crutches for many months after the accident to help alleviate the pain and swelling she experienced. Now, she has a visible circular scar where the gash was.

Acting on Rhian’s behalf, her mother – Anita – made a claim for compensation against Dublin City Council, the Trustees of Airfield United FC and the Trustees of Dublin Women’s Soccer League. Each of the accused parties accepted liability for Rian’s injury.

The parties negotiated a settlement of compensation worth €22,000. However, this settlement then proceeded to the Circuit Civil Court for approval by Mr Justice Raymond Groarke as it was made on behalf of a party under the age of eighteen.

However, Judge Groarke initially refused to approve the compensation settlement, believing that it was too low considering the extent of Rhian’s injury. Negotiations recommenced, and Judge Groarke was presented with a revised settlement of €30,000. This he approved and continued to close the case.

Storage Company Fined for Death of Employee

Dublin’s Circuit Criminal Court have fined a storage company €200,000 for breaches of health and safety regulations that resulted in the death of one of their employees. 

The accident occurred on the 28th November 2015 when Robert Ceremuga, a thirty-two year-old warehouse supervisor, was at work for VF Coldstores Ltd.. Tragically, a rack that supported around thirty-six tonnes of food products collapsed atop of Robert, killing him instantly. After the accident, an engineer’s report revealed that a forklift had accidentally collided with the rack, causing it to give way. It was also uncovered that the employee charged with the forklift had been working at the warehouse for just three weeks and lacked the appropriate license to operate the machine. 

The Health and Safety Authority (HSA) proceeded to prosecute VF Coldstores Ltd. for their breaches of health and safety regulations. Last month, at Dublin’s Circuit Criminal Court, a representative for VF Coldstores Ltd plead guilty to the charges. During the same hearing, Maria – Robert’s widow – read a victim impact statement, after which the judge – Ms Justice Melanie Greally – decided to adjourn the hearing such that she could calculate compensation using a “scientific approach”. 

Earlier this week, the hearing was reconvened. Judge Greally ordered VF Coldstores Ltd to pay a fine of €200,000 for their negligence. Brian Higgisson, the Assistant Chief Executive of the HSA, commented after the announcement of the fine that “It is important that employers adequately manage and conduct work activities, in particular carrying out risk assessments before any major works, such as alterations to racking. These assessments should ensure that everyone has the necessary training, knowledge and experience to complete the work in a safe manner.”

“Heroic” Teenager Compensated for Birth Injuries

The High Court of Dublin has approved a final settlement of birth injury compensation for a teenage girl who sustained severe brain damage after she was deprived of oxygen at birth.

On the 11th October 1999, Mary Malee was born at the Mayo General Hospital via an emergency Caesarean Section. However, her mother alleges that there was an unnecessary delay of eighty minutes in Mary’s delivery, as a miscommunication between staff meant that there was difficulty in locating a paediatrician. During this time, Mary was deprived of oxygen in utero and now suffers from cerebral palsy.

Acting on her daughter’s behalf, Maura Malee – of Swinford in Co. Mayo – made a claim for delayed delivery resulting in birth injury compensation against the Mayo General Hospital and the Health Service Executives. In the claim, she alleges that despite the fact Mary had been diagnosed with foetal distress syndrome, the hospital failed to deliver her in a timely manner due to the lack of paediatrician.

In March 2014, Mary was offered an interim settlement of compensation and the case was subsequently adjourned for two years whilst a new system of periodic settlements was introduced in Ireland. However, no such change came and earlier this month the Malee family returned to the High Court for the approval of a €5.56 settlement of compensation.

Mr Justice Peter Kelly, who oversaw the High Court hearing, heard from May that “the stress of ongoing engagement with the HSE and the courts is not what I want”. Mary also detailed her dream of becoming a spokesperson for the disabled, and as he described Mary’s ability to overcome the challenges presented to her as “heroic”, Judge Kelly approved the settlement.

After the announcement of the settlement, Mary commented to the press that “Cerebral palsy won’t kill me but I have to learn to live with it … it’s for life. This shouldn’t have happened to me and others like me. Justice has been done and I’m bringing closure to this, we can move on with our lives”.

Claim for Pony Injury Compensation Settled

A woman, who injured her wrist after falling off a pony during a weekend away, has settled her claim for compensation with the owners of a riding school.

On the 15th July 2013, Maria Gray – a thirty-five year-old dentist from Belfast – had travelled to Galway with a group of friends as part of a hen weekend. As part of the trip, the group went to Fenney’s Riding School in Thonabrocky. Though the excursion was initially without incident, as the ponies started down a steep incline, Maria’s pony gave way and Maria fell to the ground.

As a result of the fall, Maria sustained a laceration to her chin and damage to her wrist. Maria was taken to hospital, where her cuts were treated and stitched. However, she now has a permanent scar that she claims in visible to all of her patients. Despite the treatment, Maria’s injury became worse and she had to have eight weeks of physiotherapy. Whilst she was undergoing the therapy, Maria was unable to work as the splint that she had on her arm stopped her from returning to work.

Maria sought legal counsel before proceeding to make a claim for pony ride compensation against Gerard and Siobhan Feeney, the owners of the riding centre. In her claim, Maria alleged that the pony assigned to her was too small. She was just over five foot eight inches, and she claims that the pony was only suitable for those under the age of fourteen. Maria also alleges that she was not adequately instructed on how to safely ride the animal.

However, the owners of the riding centre denied that they had not provided an adequately sized pony for Maria. They also claim that they had offered Maria a larger animal, but she declines the opportunity to change. As the Feeneys did not consent to the Injuries Board’s request to investigate Maria’s claim, she went to the courts to seek compensation.

Earlier this month, the hearing to determine liability was heard at the High Court by Mr Justice Raymond Fullam. Maria testified to her belief that the pony with which she had been provided had already been on a trek that day. As the day in question was very hot, the animal was hungry and tired, and consequently kept stopping to eat grade. She also reaffirmed her belief that the pony was too small for someone of her size and stature.

However, before the hearing recommenced the next day, the court was informed that the parties had reached an agreement and that the claim for pony injury compensation could be struck.

Child Compensated for Luas Injuries

A five-figure settlement of compensation has been approved by the Circuit Court on behalf of a young girl injured by the Luas in Dublin.

The accident occurred on the 14th February 2008 when Aoife Heron, then aged six, was boarding the Luas at Connelly Station with her mother. Aoife’s mother, Elaine, was attempting to get a buggy with Aoife’s younger sister onto the tram, though didn’t manage to get in before the doors began to close.

This momentarily trapped the buggy, though the doors soon reopened. However, as Aoife tried to alight from the Luas and rejoin her mother, the doors closed again – this time, trapping little Aoife’s head.

Aoife’s head injury was treated by an emergency ambulance crew at Connelly Station. Her mother later brought her to the family’s GP. The doctor diagnosed Aoife with soft tissue damage and extensive bruising. Since the accident, Aoife has developed a fear of travelling on the Luas, and also has a scar on her head. According to her GP, Aoife may need therapy in the future to help her overcome the phobia.

Acting on her daughter’s behalf, Elaine made a claim for personal injury compensation against Veolia Transport Dublin Light Rai Ltd, the company which operates the Luas, for breach of duty and negligence resulting in injury.

Though the company denied that they were liable for Aoife’s injury, and prepared a full legal defence, they agreed to negotiate a settlement of compensation with the Heron family. Eventually, a €25,000 settlement was agreed upon.

The settlement proceeded to the Circuit Civil Court in Dublin for approval by Mr Justice Raymond Graorke, who is also the President of the Court. Judge Groarke approved the settlement for the now thirteen year old Aoife, though he ruled that the settlement will be held in court funds until Aoife reaches the age of eighteen.

Armagh Farmer Fined for Work Injury

A dairy farmer from County Armagh has received a fine from the magistrates’ court for safety breaches that lead to the injury of an employee.

The accident occurred in June 2015 when an worker on a dairy farm – who has remained anonymous throughout proceedings – was assisting in the construction of a fence. However, as he was working his leg was impaled on a prong of a rake that had fallen.

An investigation ensued into the circumstances of the accident, which happened on land owned by David Murphy of Killylea in Co. Armagh. The investigation found that there had been a breach of Article 4 of the Health and Safety at Work Order (NI) 1978. Murphy was then prosecuted by HSENI inspectors.

A hearing was conducted at the Armagh Magistrates’ Court, where Murphy admitted his guilt for the charges. He was then fined £1,000 for his negligence resulting in the injury of an employee.

Kevin Campbell, a HSNEI Inspector with the Major Investigation Team, commented after the hearing that ““Farmers must ensure that proper systems are in place to prevent employees being injured. In addition, the correct equipment must be used and be maintained in good working order. Any misuse of equipment, or the wrong choice of machinery has the potential for things to go wrong, resulting in serious injury, as was the case in this totally preventable accident.”

Interim Compensation Settlement for Misdiagnosis of Sepsis Approved

The High Court of Dublin have approved a six-figure interim settlement of compensation for a man who is now permanently in a coma after doctors failed to diagnose sepsis.

Robert Bolton, aged seventy-one, had surgery to correct a problem in his oesophagus on the 3rd October 2011 at Dublin’s St James Hospital. Though initially deemed successful, a day after the operation James had a heart attack, which was brought on by respiratory failure due to sepsis.

After his heart attack, Robert slipped into a coma and ever since has experienced minimal consciousness, unable to communicate and unaware of those around him. As such, Robert is reliant on twenty-four hour care.

Acting on behalf of her husband, Angela made a claim for medical negligence compensation against St James Hospital for their failure to diagnose her husband’s sepsis. In her claim, Angela alleged that the hospital had failed to meet established criteria for systemic inflammatory response and sepsis. She also alleged that the hospital did not recognise her husband’s symptoms of organ failure.

St James’ Hospital denied that they had failed to diagnose Robert’s sepsis, though conceded that there had been general failings in the standard of care provided to Robert. Negotiations between the parties resulted in an interim settlement of compensation worth €550,000, which was to help provide for Robert’s care for a two-year period.

This interim settlement proceeded to the High Court for approval, as the claim for compensation had been made on the behalf of someone unable to represent themselves in court. Mr Justice Kevin Cross was presented evidence of Robert’s illness and heard testimonies from Robert’s family of the impacts his condition have had on them. After hearing from Angela of how the settlement would help ensure that Robert’s care is provided for, Judge Cross approved the settlement of compensation.

Compensation for Delayed Hydrocephalus Diagnosis Awarded by Court

Dublin’s High Court have settled a claim for compensation made on the behalf of a child who had a delayed diagnosis of hydrocephalus.

On the 17th January 2008, Joe Keegan-Grant was delivered at the Mount Carmel Hospital in Dublin. He was born via an emergency Caesarean Section as a scan had shown that he had an arachnoid cyst at the base of his brain. The Caesarean was necessary to prevent pressure being applied to Joe’s head during delivery.

After his discharge from hospital, Joe was regularly examined by Dr Vladka Vilimkova, a paediatrician, and a public health nurse. However, Joe’s mother – Patricia – has alleged that at no point during the examinations was the circumference of Joe’s head recorded. She also alleges that the professionals never exchanged measurements they had made.

As a result of this lack of communication, there was a delay in realising that Joe’s head was expanding at a faster rate than expected. When the family moved house, and as such changed GP, their new doctor expressed their concerns about the rapidly expanding circumference of Joe’s head.

In October 2008, Patricia took Joe to Crumlin Hospital for a scan. There, her son was diagnosed with hydrocephalus, which is a known consequence of arachnoid cysts. This has, in turn, affected Joe’s developmental delay and autism.

Acting on her son’s behalf, Patricia made a claim against Mount Carmel for the delayed diagnosis of hydrocephalus. In her claim, she alleged that both of the medical professionals charged with looking after her son should have been more vigilant given her son’s medical history.

Though they have denied liability, the Health Service Executives (HSE) have offered Joe a compensation settlement of €1.9 million for the delayed diagnosis. In the High Court, Mr Justice Kevin Cross was told of Joe’s progress despite his autism diagnosis.

However, the judge was also told that Joe would be reliant on care for the rest of his life. Whilst speaking at the hearing, Joe’s father said that: “we just want to ensure that we can look after him and offer him the best care and therapy and interventions that can bring him along.”

The HSE also disputed the link made between the diagnoses of hydrocephalus and autism. In light of these concerns, Joe’s mother was advised to accept the compensation settlement on her son’s behalf. The judge then approved the settlement,  noting the should the case have a full hearing, the HSE may win the dispute. Judge Cross closed by wishing Joe and his family well for the future.

Man Compensated for Brain Injuries after Lorry Collision

A six-figure settlement of compensation has been awarded to a young man who sustained severe brain injuries after a car crash.

The accident occurred on the 27th January 2009 when Francis Smith, aged eighteen from Edgeworthstown in Co. Longford, crashed into a stationary lorry. However, he collided with the lorry as he was attempting to avoid a head-on crash with another vehicle. The lorry had stopped close to where roadworks were being undertaken by the council.

As a result of the accident, Francis sustained dramatic brain injuries. He still suffers from both physical and cognitive difficulties, and has not been able to return to his job in a local factory. As it was determined that Francis was unfit to represent himself in legal proceedings, his mother made a claim for car injury compensation against the Longford County Council on her son’s behalf.

In the claim, it was alleged that by failing to adequately warn drivers of the roadworks, the County Council had been negligent. Francis’ mother alleged that there were no signs or other such indicators to show that the roadworks were being undertaken. Additionally, she claimed that the way the lorry was parked meant it projected onto the road, proving a hazard for motorists.

The county council argued that Francis had been negligent as he was driving too quickly, and as such had caused his own injury. However, once negotiations began between the party, the council agreed to pay a €750,000 compensation settlement to Francis for his brain injuries.

The settlement then proceeded to the High Court for approval by Mr Justice Kevin Cross – a necessary procedure, as the claim had been made on the behalf of someone unable to represent themselves in court.

After hearing the circumstances of the accident, Judge Cross approved the settlement, dismissing any allegations of contributory negligence. As he closed the hearing, he wished Francis well for the future.

Family Compensated for Emotional Trauma in Shop

Two children have received settlements of compensation for the emotional trauma they sustained when caught up in a mock armed robbery in a Dublin shop.

The incident occurred in March 2013 when Casie and Abbie Kennedy – aged eight and eleven respectively – were shopping at the Dundrum Shopping Centre with their mother, Claudia. As the family were trying clothes on in the changing room of H&M, they heard a man shouting aggressively and swearing at staff. He was ordering the shop assistants to hand over any cash in the tills and then to get on the ground. However, it later transpired that this was just a training exercise.

The young family were trapped in the shop’s change rooms, completely unaware that no-one was in any real danger. Claudia kept her daughters in the booth until the shouting had stopped, at which point she went to investigate what happened. Her daughters remained, terrified, in the changing area.

When Claudia asked the shop assistants what had happened, the manager explained the situation to her. Claudia was furious that no-one had cared to check that every area of the shop was empty of customers before the training exercise was undertaken.

Yet when Claudia telephoned the H&M head office to complain, she was offered nothing but a €30 and a curt apology. Claudia then decided to make a claim for emotional trauma compensation on her daughters’ behalf. In the claim, made against H&M Hennes&Mauritz (Ireland)Ltd, it was alleged that both of her young daughters were afraid for their lives whilst trapped in the changing rooms.

The retail giant went on to offer the girls compensation settlements for their trauma – €8,000 for Casie and €10,000 for Abbie. The case then proceeded to the Circuit Civil Court, where Judge Rory MacCabe approved the settlements.

Factory Worker Receives Compensation for Back Injury

A man has received €415,000 compensation for no longer being able to work after the High Court heard a back injury claim due to inadequate training. 

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

Mohammed underwent two operations on his back, yet his condition did not improve. He was diagnosed with failed back syndrome and suffers from persistent pain in his back and legs, and foot weakness. He is now entirely dependent on a crutch to support himself, and has been rendered unable to work.

Mohammed sought legal advice, and made a claim for compensation against Moyvalley Meats Ireland Limited. In his claim, 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 the direct result of a pre-existing back condition. However, an expert witness was brought to testify, and stated that no safe system of work had been implemented to avoid the twisting manoeuvre responsible for Mohammed´s back injury. It was also revealed that the only training Mohammed had received was watching an operative perform the task for a short period of time, and Mohammed had not performed the task himself.

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 compensation settlement was for Mohammed´s lost income and his past and continued pain and suffering.

HSE Investigates Care Home Abuse Allegations

A care centre is being investigated by the Health Service Executive after the airing of an RTÉ documentary showing abuse of residents.

The documentary in question focused on the Áras Attracta Care Home in Swinford, Co. Mayo. It was aired on RTÉ Primetime earlier this month, and consisted of footage showing staff at the residential home kicking, slapping and restraining intellectually challenged residents.

An undercover researcher, who was posing as someone on work experience, filmed the footage after information was passed to the national broadcaster by a whistleblower. The abuse took place in Unit 3 of Áras Attracta, a small house where three women lived. The women were often constrained to chairs for hours at a time.

Before the exposé was aired, the broadcaster contacted the HSE – who are ultimately responsible for the care home – concerning the allegations and footage. The actions of the care staff were described as “totally unacceptable”, and resulted in the suspension of several staff members. The HSE has also requested the involvement of the Garda and the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA).

Tony O’Brien, the Director General of the HSE, commented that “Much of what was viewed on Primetime falls well below the standards that we expect in the health services. Such standards should not and will not be tolerated in the HSE.” He added: “At the centre of many of these examples of poor practice is individual responsibility of staff members.”

An apology was then issued by the HSE to the residents of Unit 3 and their families. Kathleen Lynch, Minister of State of the Department of Health, commented that “I refuse to believe Áras Attracta is the only place where this is happening. We are looking at what other processes we can put in place.”

A spokesperson at the ministry for health has since stated that €1.3 million has been allocated by the HSE to ensure the allegations are investigated thoroughly.

Hearing Adjourned Due to Inadequate Offer of Compensation

A judge in Dublin’s Circuit Civil Court has adjourned a hearing for child injury compensation, citing that the compensation offered to the victims was too low in sum. 

The accident occurred in November 2012 when Harry Ryan, aged twelve from Swords in Co. Dublin, was playing on a local green. However, as he was playing, he slipped and cut his lower leg on a piece of broken glass. Harry was taken to the VHI Swiftcare Clinic, where he had eight stitches to close the laceration. Steri-stripes were also applied to try and help the cut heal.

Acting on her son’s behalf, Ita Patton made a claim for injury compensation against Fingal County Council. The council denied that they were liable for Harry’s injuries, though made him an offer of €3,000 in compensation. The settlement, as it was made on behalf of a legal minor, then had to go to court for approval. 

However, last week at the Circuit Civil Court, Judge James O’Donohoe said that he would not approve the settlement of compensation offered to Harry as he considered it too low for the injuries that Harry sustained. The case was then adjourned for two weeks such that the parties could recommence negotiations. 

The hearing was reconvened earlier this week, where the judge heard that the compensation settlement offered to Harry had been increased to €3,500. Harry’s solicitor told the judge that that he was aware that a similar claim had been dismissed recently in the High Court, and that the County Council had prepared a dull defence.

Yet, when Judge Groarke inspected the scar left on Harry’s leg, he restated his belief that the compensation being offered was not an adequate sum. Judge Groarke said that a settlement of €30,000 would be more appropriate, and adjourned the hearing once again to facilitate negotiations between the parties. 

Woman Compensated for Supermarket Injury Claim

A sixty year-old woman has been awarded a five-figure settlement of compensation for injuries she sustained after slipping on a potato wedge in an aisle of a Dunnes Stores supermarket. 

The accident occurred in November 2011 when Anna Manning, a housewife from Clondalkin in Co. Dublin, was shopping in her local branch of Dunnes Stores. As she made her way towards the fish section, she slipped and fell on a potato wedge that had been left on the floor. The potato had remained on the floor despite an earlier slip and fall that day. 

Anna fell to her knees, and the next day she went to her GP with pains in her back and neck. Anna proceeded to seek legal counsel and made a claim for injury compensation against Dunnes Stores for her slip and fall injury. 

Dunnes Stores refused consent to, the Injuries Board for an assessment of Anna’s claim to be carried out. As such, Anna was issued with authorisation by the board to proceed to the courts with her claim. The claim for slip and fall compensation was heard earlier this month at the Circuit Civil Court by Mr Justice Raymond Groarke. 

During the hearing, Judge Groarke was informed that Anna’s fall had worsened an existing condition. However, she had also sustained an injury to her wrist, which was having negative effects on her life. However, this claim was disputed by Dunnes Stores, who claimed that Anna was responsible for her own injury through her lack of caution. 

These accusations were, however, dismissed by Judge Groarke, who found in Anna’s favour. He added that he believed Anna a “very poor candidate” for lying about her story, and that her medical history was non-disputable. Additionally, he said that Dunnes Stores was negligent as they had not adequately cleared up the previous accident. Anna was then awarded €22,900 in compensation for her accident. 

Man Receives Compensation for Hand Injury from Slip in Bar

A  man has received compensation for a hand injury that he received after he fell on broken glass after slipping in a bar. 

In September 2011, David O’Keeffe (31) made was watching the All Ireland Football Final in the Woolshed Baa & Grill on Parnell Street in Dublin with a group of friends when, after the match had finished, he attempted to visit the restroom.

As he was making his way through the packed bar, he slipped on a wet patch of floor and fell, resulting in a cut on his hand as he landed on a piece of glass. David was attended to by a First Aider at the bar, and later attended the Accident & Emergency Department of St. James’ Hospital. The cut was properly cleaned and stitched at the hospital.

David sought legal counsel, and made a cut hand injury compensation claim against the Woolshed Baa & Grill, claiming that the bar had allowed uncollected glasses to stack up, which had likely called over and smashed. He further claimed that spilled drinks remained unattended to and that the bar had failed to follow adequate cleaning procedures, resulting in his injury.

The defendants denied liability for David’s injury. They further refused to grant consent to the Injuries Board for assessment of the claim. As a result, David was authorised to pursue his claim for compensation in court. A hearing to establish liability for his injury took place last week at the Circuit Civil Court in Dublin.

Judge Jacqueline Linnane was told by the Woolshed Baa & Grill that David’s hand injury was due to David’s friend unsuccessfully trying to lift him up while he had a glass in his hand. The bar owners testified that the bar had followed its cleaning procedures on the day in question, and that although an accident report had been completed at the time, they were unable to locate it.

In spite of this account, Judge Linnane stated 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”. She found in David´s favour and awarded him €20,000 in settlement of his cut hand injury compensation claim.

Family Seek Compensation for Post-Operative Infection

The family of a woman who died from organ failure following a routine operation, have begun claiming compensation for their loss.

On the 13th July 2013, Susan McGee – a fifty-two year-old mother of two from Rush, Co. Dublin – was admitted t the Hermitage Medical Clinic. Susan was to undergo an operation to remove a hernia; initially deemed successful, Susan was discharged a few days later to the care of Melissa Barry, one of her children.

However, just one day after her discharge Susan began feeling unwell and experiencing pain and discomfort in her stomach. She and her daughter returned to the medical centre where she was readmitted for observation. Yet Susan continued to worsen, and a CAT scan conducted on the 22nd July showed that she had an obstruction in her intestine.

An emergency operation was carried out to help clear the blockage, though Susan did not improve. The next day, she was moved to Beaumont Hospital, where she tragically died on the 24th July. Her cause of death was multiple organ failure caused by sepsis, which was in turn caused by a  Clostridium difficile infection.

In February 2015, an inquest was carried out into the circumstances of Susan’s death. However, it was adjourned as only the consultants overseeing Susan’s care gave statements. There was an additional risk that the evidence provided by the nurses at the hospital would be contradicted by Melissa’s testimony.

The case reconvened in June 2015 at the Dublin City Coroner’s Court. There, the court heard that the medical staff had not noticed that there was faecal fluid draining from Susan’s nasogastric tube. Additionally, there was a gap in the records of Susan’s vital signs between 8:00 am and 6:00 pm on the 21st July, just three days before her death.

Whilst Susan was at the hospital, there was just one resident medical officer on duty, Dr Lachman Pahwani. Whilst speaking during the hearing, Dr Pahwani claimed that he had devoted as much time as possible to Susan whilst she was under his care, but that he had another eighty-one patients to care for during that period.

The court ruled that Susan died because of medical misadventure and once the hearing concluded, Susan’s family announced their intent to claim for wrongful death due to a fatal post-surgical infection, medical negligence and bereavement due to medical negligence.

Bereaved Couple Criticise HSE Apology

A couple, who were recently read an apology by the HSE expressing regret for the death of their newborn, have publicly criticised the organisation for the six-year delay in apologising.

Caoimhe Mulcair was born at the Midland Regional Hospital on the 11th February 2009 to Joan and John Mulcair, a couple from Corbally, Limerick. Caoimhe was eagerly anticipated by her parents, who had been trying for a child for many years before her birth. However, just thirty-nine minutes after her delivery, Caoimhe tragically died in her mother’s arms.

Earlier this month, an inquest was held concerning  the circumstances of Caoimhe’s death. There, medical experts gave evidence that she had suffered a lack of oxygen to her brain in utero and that, during her mother’s labour, it was noted that the foetus’ heartbeat was slowing.

Following established recommendations, the jury at the inquest ruled that Caoimhe’s death was due to medical misadventure. Before this ruling, however, Joan and John were read a statement by Collette Cowan, the Chief Executive of the Midland Regional Hospital, which apologised for baby Caoimhe’s death.

Yet Joan and John publicly refused to accept the apology, claiming that it had been delivered six years too late. After the conclusion of the inquest, John expressed his disgust that the HSE had put “an ordinary decent family through the pain and torment we had to endure for over six years”.

John went on the comment that, for years after his daughter’s death, the HSE refused to accept any responsibility for her death until last December, where they finally conceded liability and settled the family’s claim for bereavement compensation.

However, the HSE reported that it did not have control over medical negligence cases, and that the State Claims Agency handled cases such as that of the Mulcair’s. This comment, too, was criticised by a columnist for the Irish Times, who wrote that “A common interest links the HSE and the claims agency and there has been a persistent pattern of denial, prevarication and years of unnecessary delay in dealing with medical claims. The public and aggrieved patients deserve better. So do the vast majority of medical professionals.”

Motor Industry Criticises High Court Settlements

Representatives for Ireland’s largest motor insurance companies have called for a revision in how judges award claims for compensation brought to the High Court.

Conor Faughan, who works at AA Ireland, was the first to make the criticisms. He was referring to a recent statistic that said that, on average, the value of claims awarded by the High Court increased from €227,000 to €304,000 between 2013 and 2015.

Mr Faughan criticised the judges in the courts, saying that they needed to be reminded that the settlements are funded by Ireland’s two million motorists. However,  there are inaccuracies in the claim – personal injury claims resulting from traffic accidents to not often reach the High Court. Even so, Mr Faughan correctly pointed out that, over the same time period, the value of claims assessed by the Injuries Board Ireland remained around €22,600.

Some attribute to the climb in value to changes in the Courts and Civil Law Act 2013. Under these changes, the minimum potential compensation level for cases to be heard in the High Court was changed from €38,092 to €60,000. It is also believed that judges are awarding €60,000 in cases where they believe less should be paid because of these restrictions.

The founding chairperson of the Injuries Board and the chair of the Motor Insurance Advisory Board, Dorothea Dowling, has stated her belief that plaintiffs are rejecting assessments by the Injuries Board in favour of pursuing a potentially higher settlement in the courts. Speaking to the Independent, she said that “The Department of Justice was forewarned well in advance. This is what happens when you increase the limits of the lower courts – it sends out the message that €38,000 is small money.”

Mr Justice Bernard Barton has also been outspoken on the issue, particularly in his criticism of the pitted Book of Quantum (a reference for injury compensation settlements). He commented that the book was essentially ignored by judges because it had not been updated since 2004, and commented that “it is unquestionably in the interests of the proper administration of justice that the Book be reviewed and be kept updated to properly reflect [compensation awards made by the High Court]”.

Teenager Compensated for Brain Injuries Sustained at Birth

A seven-figure settlement of medical negligence compensation has been approved by the High Court for injuries sustained by a  eighteen year-old boy as an newborn.

On the 16th September 1996, Thomas O’Connor was delivered via Caesarean Section at the Sligo General Hospital. However, upon his birth he showed no signs of life and had to be resuscitated using a tube to provide oxygen. Then, on his way to Intensive Care, baby Thomas suffered a heart attack. Once again, the newborn had to be brought back to life.

As a result of both of these incidents, Thomas was deprived of oxygen and sustained devastating damage to his brain. The damage has rendered him a spastic quadriplegic that requires round-the-clock care. Thomas, who is also blind and requires a tube for feeding, lives in a residential care home in Co. Sligo, close to his family.

Thomas’ mother, Ann, made a claim on her son’s behalf against Sligo General Hospital and the Health Service Executive. In the claim, she alleged that she had received inadequate care before the birth of her son. Additionally, she claims that Thomas’ heart attack was a direct consequence of  the improper insertion of his breathing tube.

However, both parties denied that they were liable for Thomas’ condition and contested Ann’s claim for birth injury compensation. The case proceeded to Dublin’s High Court, where it was overseen by Mr Justice Kevin Cross.

During the hearing, an expert witness told the judge that, despite a CTG scan conducted the morning before Thomas’ showing that he was suffering from foetal distress syndrome, there was an unnecessary delay of up to four hours in his delivery.

The witness also told the court that the tube used to ventilate Thomas after his first resuscitation had not been inserted in accordance with established guidelines. Rather than the recommended insertion depth of 9 to 10 cm, the tube had been inserted to 14 cm. This meant that Thomas was not adequately ventilated, leading to the heart attack.

The hearing proceeded for a total of four weeks, after which the HSE agreed to pay €1.75 million in compensation to Thomas. This was then approved by Judge Cross, who expressed his relief that the drawn-out ordeal was over for the O’Connors.

Man Compensated for Heart Attack Brought on by Medical Negligence

An interim settlement of medical negligence compensation has been approved by a High Court judge for man who suffered a heart attack.

Martin Byrne, aged fifty-two from Swords in Co. Dublin, was admitted to the Mater University Hospital in December 2010 for surgery on his heart meant to treat an unstable angina. The operation was initially deemed successful, though just five days later Martin was bleeding internally, triggered by the removal of pacing wires. Martin then suffered his heart attack.

As a result of the heart attack, Martin’s heart stopped for fifteen minutes. During this time, his brain was starved of oxygen, leading to devastating brain damage. Martin slipped into a coma, and didn’t reawaken for nearly a year. Now, he is reliant on Una, his wife, for round-the-clock care and assistance.

Acting on her husband’s behalf, Una made a claim for medical negligence compensation resulting in a  heart attack. In the claim, it was alleged that the junior staff – because of their relative inexperience –  had incorrectly removed the pacing wires and as such caused Martin’s internal bleeding. However, it was not until December 2014 that the Mater University Hospital accepted that they were liable for Martin’s condition.

The case then proceeded to the High Court of Dublin, where Mr Justice Kevin Cross heard testimony that Martin – a father-of-four and retired taxi driver – was a very active and involved man before his heart attack, engaging in diverse activities such as camping and scuba diving. In her testimony, Una told the judge that “we thought it was the beginning of the rest of our lives as our children were working or at college”.

An interim settlement of compensation had been negotiated between the parties, amounting to €1.5 million. The purpose of this settlement is to cover Martin’s medical and care expenses for a three-year period as other reports into his claim and condition are being compiled. This also allows time for a new system of periodic payments to be introduced into Ireland.

Mary Day, the CEO of the Mater University Hospital, read an apology to Martin and his family, after which Judge Cross approved the compensation settlement, commenting that Una had “suffered something nobody should have suffered”. Before closing the case, he wished Martin and his family well for the future.

Woman Compensated for Damages due to Forgotten Vaginal Swab

A woman from Dublin has been awarded a six-figure settlement of compensation for injuries that resulted from a forgotten vaginal swab that had been used during her labour.

Claire Lalor, from Swords in Co. Dublin, gave birth on the 24th December 2012 at the National Maternity Hospital. The labour had been long and difficult, and Claire was discharged from the hospital three days after the delivery. However, she returned on two consecutive occasions in two weeks as she was complaining of an unpleasant smell and cramps in her lower abdomen.

However, Claire was never examined internally – despite her concerns – and on her second visit a prescription of antibiotics was given to deal with the supposed infection. Yet a week later her condition had not improved and Claire was finally given an internal examination. The doctor discovered that a vaginal swab – that had been used to stem bleeding during Claire’s labour – had been left inside her.

Though the swab was removed, Claire continued to experience pain. Further visits to the National Maternity Hospital resulted in a diagnosis of post-natal depression, though Claire then decided to visit Beaumont Hospital. There, she was diagnosed with a Clostridium difficile that was the result of the antibiotics prescription.

Upon her recovery, Claire sought legal counsel and proceeded to make a claim for the injuries she suffered. The hospital acknowledged that they were liable for Claire’s injuries as a result of the forgotten swab and the following bacterial infection, though they contested the extent to which Claire suffered psychologically.

The National Maternity Hospital argued that rather than suffering from psychological damage because of the forgotten swab, Claire was actually suffering from post-natal depression. Negotiations were fruitless, and the case proceeded to the High Court of Dublin where it was heard by Mr Justice Kevin Cross.

Though the judge agreed that the psychological damages for which Claire was claiming were more likely to be attributable to post-natal depression, especially considering her difficult labour, he agreed that – had she received adequate post-natal care – her symptoms may not be as severe. Judge Cross proceeded to award Claire €140,000 in compensation.

Judge Awards Compensation to Man Injured in Sunbed Accident

Compensation has been awarded by the High Court in Dublin to a man for injury caused by an accident involving a sunbed in 2012.

Vincent Reid (72) of Lisburn, County Antrim was on vacation at the Hotel Savoy in Lake Garda, Italy when the incident occurred. As the man leaned back on the sunbed, his middle finger was caught in the arm mechanism of the chair, slicing the tip of the finger off. Vincent was immediately transported to a nearby hospital, where he received suitable care for the injury to his right hand. His finger remained in a splint for three months following his return to Ireland.

The package holiday had been organised through the travel company Topflight Ltd. Vincent made is claim for compensation against them through the Injuries Board of Ireland. The defendant denied liability for the accident, claiming that such an event was unforeseeable to them.

Last week, Vincent’s case for compensation was heard by Mr Justice Michael Hanna at the High Court in Dublin, as the Injuries Board was unable to assess the claim themselves.

As evidence, the judge heard how a similar injury had been sustained by another Irish guest to the resort merely days before Vincent’s own accident. It was also explained that the chair had not been ready for use by Vincent; the arm mechanism should have been locked into place before it was suitable to be leaned on.

The judge dismissed the Dublin travel company’s claim that the accident could not have been foreseen. He stated that the fact that the sunbed would collapse had the arm mechanism not been locked in place would have been known to the staff at the resort, and they had been negligent in assuring that it was fully fit for use.

He also heard that Vincent still suffered pain in the affected finger, and had limited mobility in it as a result, which prevented him from participating in his hobbies such as DIY or gardening.

Judge Hanna found Topflight Ltd guilty of breaching the Package Holidays and Travel Trade Act of 1995, rendering them liable to pay €40,796 for a sunbed accident on holiday.

Young Boy Compensated for Birth Injuries

An interim settlement of compensation has been approved by a High Court judge for a ten year-old boy who sustained severe injuries at his birth.

On the 30th September 2004, Luke Beirne was born at the Midlands Regional Hospital. However, Luke – who was delivered eleven days after his due date – was deprived of oxygen in utero due to alleged medical negligence at his birth. This caused him to sustain severe brain damage, and he now lives with cerebral palsy.

Margaret, Luke’s mother, has alleged that during her labour the midwives were “chatting in the corridor”, neglecting to monitor her condition. Additionally, she claimed that the theatre’s door was locked, causing a delay in Luke’s delivery. As well as suffering from cerebral palsy, Luke has asthma and will require surgery as he grows to correct the tightening of his muscles.

Acting on Luke’s behalf, Margaret sought legal counsel and proceeded to make a claim for birth negligence against the Health Service Executive and Dr David Mortell, he consultant obstetrician. In the claim she alleges that the latter did not discuss the risks of a vaginal birth for her second child, given that her first baby was delivered via a Caesarean Section three years before Luke.

Both accused parties denied that they were liable for Luke’s injuries, though they released statements that expressed their sorrow for Luke’s injuries and their consequences. However, they offered Margaret an interim settlement of compensation, made without an admission of liability.

Though dissatisfied with the outcome of the case, Margaret decided to follow the advice of her solicitor and accept the interim settlement. The case proceeded to the High Court, where Margaret informed Mr Justice Michael Morality that she trusted that the court would act in Luke’s best interest.

However, the judge was also told of the family’s concern that the offer of interim compensation – worth €800,000 – would not be enough to pay for Luke’s care. The defence told him that, should he decide the case needed a full trial, that they would testify that everything possible had been done to ensure Luke’s wellbeing.

Judge Moriarty commented that Margaret’s solicitors had engaged in “very hard bargaining” to secure the settlement offer, and that it was for Luke’s interest that he decided the case should not go to full trial. He proceeded to approve the compensation settlement and adjourned the case such that an assessment of damages can be conducted.

Out-of-Court Negotiations Settle Head-On Crash Claim as a Result of Union Involvement

An undisclosed amount of compensation has been settled upon for head-on crash injury as a result of out-of-court negotiations after involvement with the victim’s union.

Nick Brancher (37) was driving along the A38 after dropping his daughter off at school in April 2013. Suddenly, a vehicle that had been driving towards him swerved into the westbound carriageway, resulting in a head on collision between the two cars.

Nick was transported by ambulance to hospital to have his injuries attended to. He had sustained a fracture to his left elbow and several soft tissue injuries. Nick received appropriate treatment for these injuries. Over the next several weeks, more soft tissue injuries manifested themselves on his neck, back and rib area.

Nick was fortunate to be able to return to work as a maintenance team leader a merely days after the incident occurred, although his injuries prevented him from indulging in his hobbies such as kayaking, cycling and Ju Jitsu. His work was limited, however; he had to keep flexible hours, and could only perform very light tasks for several months.

Nick consulted with his Unite union representative-Rob Miguel- and  made a claim for head-on collision injury compensation against the driver who had lost control of his vehicle and caused the crash. The other driver’s insurer admitted negligence, and accepted fault for the accident. Following negotiations, a suitable amount of compensation was agreed upon outside of court.

Nick later said; “The other driver had lost control and hit two other cars before we collided head-on, it all happened so fast. I‘m just very grateful my daughter wasn’t in the vehicle with me”.

The Unite union representative further stated: “Our member sustained a series of injuries because a driver wasn’t concentrating. The level of injuries could have been far worse, but nevertheless the accident was still a serious one and went on to affect our member’s life for months after the crash”.

Compensation Awarded to Girl for Cut Knee Sports Injury

A Circuit Civil Court judge has awarded a settlement for compensation to a girl who suffered a cut knee as a result of a sporting accident.

In June 2012 Rhian Holohan (17) of Kentstown, County Meath, was playing football for Kinston Rovers FC at Ayrfield United FC pitch when she dived on the grass. Her knee caught on a piece of broken glass, cutting it open. She received immediate first aid for her injuries, and was subsequently transported to Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital for further treated for the cut. Her wound was cleaned and she received stitches under anaesthetic.

Rhian was forced to use crutches for several weeks after the incident due to the severe laceration. Her knee was swollen, causing her considerable pain. She was prevented from returning to football for several months following the incident. She has a scar 1.5 cm in length on her knee as a result from the deep cut.

On behalf of her daughter, Anita Holohan made a cut knee sports injury claim for compensation against the Trustees of Dublin Women’s Soccer League, the Trustees of Ayrfield United FC and Dublin City Council for negligence that caused her daughter’s injury.

The defendants accepted liability for the claim. Initial compensation of €22,000 was negotiated between the parties. However, since Rhian is a minor, the settlement went to the Circuit Civil Court to be approved. Mr Justice Raymond Groarke heard the case and rejected the settlement, claiming that it was not enough for the level of injury sustained by Rhian. He requested that both parties reconsider the settlement.

As a result of further talks, the compensation was increased to €30,000 for Rhian’s cut knee sports injury. Mr Justice Raymond Groarke approved this offer of settlement on Rhian’s behalf.

Offer of Compensation for Shop Accident Rejected by Judge

An offer of compensation for injuries sustained by a young girl in a shop accident has been refused by a judge in the Circuit Civil Court in Dublin.

Shauna Kelly (17) was browsing through the electronic books section in the Eason’s branch in Lower O’Connell Street when an electronic display board fell from the wall and hit her on the head and arm.

Shauna was transported the Crumlin Children’s Hospital, where she was diagnosed with a concussion and soft tissue injuries to her back and neck. X-rays were taken, and it was revealed that no bones had been broken, although she had sprained her wrist. A splint was placed on the wound to add support while it healed.

On behalf of her daughter, Kathy Maher consulted a solicitor, and made a claim for compensation for personal injuries sustained in a shop accident. She claimed that Eason’s and David James Retail Solutions Ltd-the company that had installed the display board-had failed in their duty of care, resulting in the injury to her daughter.

The defendants offered a settlement of €13,500 after some negotiations to resolve the claim. As Shauna was a minor at the time, the offer of compensation had to be brought before a judge to be approved on her behalf.

Court President Mr Justice Raymond Groarke heard the case at the Circuit Civil Court in Dublin. He heard the circumstances of the accident, and the nature of the injuries sustained. The plaintiffs claimed that Shauna experienced severe headaches for six months after the accident occurred and still suffered stiffness in her back.

Shauna’s barrister told the judge of the offer that had been made by the defendants as compensation for the injuries sustained in a shop accident. He further stated that he did not believe that it adequately represented the young girl’s injuries, and thus was not prepared to recommend approval.

Judge Groarke declined the settlement, claiming that a more appropriate settlement of compensation for Shauna could be made if the case went to a full hearing. The approval hearing will be held later this year.

Failure to Treat Compensation Awarded by Court

The High Court of Dublin has approved a seven-figure settlement of compensation for a girl who sustained severe brain damage as a result of doctor’s failure to treat.

In April 2006, Caoimhe Flood was born at Dublin’s Rotunda Hospital. However, because of injuries sustained at her birth, Caoimhe suffers from cerebral palsy. Her mother alleges that this was a direct consequence of her doctor’s failure to treat her abdominal pains.

Caoimhe’s mother, Marlis, had a history of ante part haemorrhages. In the months preceding her daughter’s birth, Marlis regularly attended the Rotunda for check-ups. However, between the 30th March and the 2nd April, she was admitted to hospital with pains in her abdomen. The day after her discharge, she returned for scans as she was beginning to experience other symptoms.

In her legal action, Marlis alleged that the scan was not conducted on the 3rd April, and she was sent home instead. The next day she returned to the hospital once again, her pain getting ever worse. An exam showed that she was in labour, and Caoimhe was born later that day. This, Marlis believes, was an unnecessary and available delay in her baby’s delivery.

After her daughter’s diagnosis with cerebral palsy, Marlis made a claim on her behalf against the Rotunda Hospital and the Health Service Executives, alleging that Caoimhe’s injuries could have been delayed if the hospital had treated her in a prompt manner.

The Rotunda denied that the were liable for Caoimhe’s birth injuries, though in 2012 they agreed to pay am interim settlement of compensation worth €1.3 million without admitting liability. Earlier this month, the case proceeded to the High Court for approval, as it was made on the behalf of a minor.

Mr Justice Bernard Barton heard at the court of how Caoimhe’s delayed birth left her a spastic quadriplegic. She is now reliant on full-time care. The final settlement – worth €2.6 million – was approved by Judge Barton, who expressed his relief that the drawn-out case was settled for the family.

Girl Compensated for Erb’s Palsy

An eleven year-old girl has been awarded a €250,000 settlement of compensation for birth injuries she sustained that resulted in a life-long disability.

In January 2004, Keelan Murray was delivered at the National Maternity Hospital. However, during her birth, it was noted that Keelan had shoulder dystocia – meaning her shoulders could not pass the pubic symphysis. This is considered an emergency condition, as it can lead to extensive nerve damage should excessive force be used to free the baby from the birth canal.

Regrettably, Keelan – who now lives in Newtownmountkennedy in Co. Wicklow – sustained such nerve damage. Though in some cases, the damage to the brachial plexus nerves can resolve as the child grows, in Keelan’s case they have not. She has been diagnosed with Erb’s palsy as a result of the damage, and now cannot use her right arm. Though her right hand would usually have been dominant, the birth injury has meant that she has had to reverse her natural inclination and write with her left hand.

In 2012, an operation was carried out to try and repair some of the nerve damage. However, this failed and Keelan still cannot use her arm. Acting on Keelan’s behalf, her mother – Sharon – made a claim for birth injury compensation against the National Maternity Hospital, alleging that excessive force was used to free Keelan, even though the diagnosis of shoulder dystocia had been made.

However, the hospital denied that they were liable for Keelan’s disability. Despite this, they made an offer of €250,000 in medical negligence compensation to Keelan, without admitting liability. The settlement then proceeded to the High Court for approval by a judge.

The case was heard earlier this month by Mr Justice Kevin Cross at Dublin’s High Court. There, the judge was told that Keelan was working to overcome her disability by engaging in sports. Judge Cross, wishing Keelan well for the future, proceeded to approve the settlement and closed the case.

Judge Rules in Favour of Bus Fall Victim

A court has awarded compensation to a woman who sustained injuries by falling on a bus after the driver pulled out sharply from the bus stop, causing her to lose her balance.

In May 2013, Mary Steel (82) of Argyle had just stepped onto a bus outside the Braehead shopping centre in Glasgow when she was trying to find a seat. Suddenly, the bus-owned by the private bus company McGill’s-pulled away from the bus stop, causing Mary to lose her balance. She fell, injuring her shoulder as she hit the floor. Emergency services were called and she was treated by paramedics on-scene. She was then transported to the nearby Southern General Hospital, where x-rays were taken.

The x-rays revealed that she had fractured no bones in her shoulder or arm. In spite of this, Mary suffered continual pain in the region, which caused her to sink into depression. She sought legal counsel, and proceeded to make a claim for compensation against the bus company. She alleged that the driver had shown a lack of care when he sharply pulled away from the bus stop, causing her to fall and sustain her injuries.

The case was heard by Judge Lady Stacey in the Court of Session in Edinburgh. Mary’s legal team argued that Mary should be entitled to compensation due to the nature in which she sustained her injuries while falling on the bus, blaming the manner in which the driver had been handling the bus.

The judge found McGill’s liable for Mary’s injuries as their employee had been negligent, stating:  “In my opinion the defender´s driver failed to ensure that a passenger who had been seen by him to be elderly and unsteady was seated before moving off. In doing so, he acted contrary to the defender´s policy and in breach of common law”.

She further said: “The movement of the bus while the pursuer was not seated caused her to lose her balance and fall”. The judge awarded Mary £10,000 as compensation for the injuries to her shoulder and for her subsequent depression.

Child Compensated for Dog Bite

A young girl has received a six-figure settlement of compensation for injuries she sustained after being bitten by a large dog.

On the 26th December 2011, Lauren Kelly and her friends were enjoying a game of “hunting the wren” in their town of Abbeylara in Co. Longford. However, as Lauren was playing a Rottweiler – that had escaped its owner’s property by jumping over a wall – attacked her.

Despite the intervention of her mother and friends, Lauren sustained twenty-six puncture wounds to her arms and neck. Onlookers later testified that Lauren had been “tossed around like a rag doll”, and it was only because of the intervention of others that she did not sustained graver injuries.

Lauren was rushed to hospital, where she was treated for the puncture wounds. The little girl also had a series of skin grafts to try and repair the damage, though now she still has over twenty scars on her arms. Even now, whilst engaging in some activities (such as swimming), Lauren is required to wear a specialised medical sleeve that prevents an infection developing.

Acting on their child’s behalf, Michael and Marcella Kelly made a claim for dog bite compensation against William Crawford, the Rottweiler’s owner. In their claim, they alleged that Crawford’s negligence stemmed from the fact that he had not undertaken adequate preventative measures to stop his animal from escaping.

Crawford initially denied that he was liable to pay the compensation settlement, though negotiations between the parties resulted in a settlement of €150,000. However, as the claim was made on behalf of a legal minor, the settlement had to be approved by a judge before it could be paid.

As such, the case proceeded to Dublin’s High Court, where Mr Justice Kevin Cross was told of Lauren’s injuries and their impacts. He then went on to approve the settlement, though added the condition that the sum should be kept in a court account until Lauren reached the age of eighteen.

Judge Refuses Initial Settlement in Trampoline Accident Case

In July 2012, Kevin Stokes (five-years-old at the time of the incident) of County Dublin was playing on a trampoline when his leg became wedged in the gap between the base and the frame. He was immediately transported to Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital to receive medical attention. X-rays were taken, and it was revealed that his fibula and tibia had fractured as a result of the accident.

The young boy was admitted to the hospital with a black slab cast surrounding his leg. After several days, the fractures were manipulated again and Kevin was fitted with an above-the-knee cast, which he had to wear for a month. He was discharged from hospital in a wheelchair, unable to walk himself.

When the month with the cast was complete, Kevin required a walking frame for several weeks. During this time, he was unable to play with his friends, and experienced severe discomfort in his leg. On behalf of her son, Margaret made a claim for compensation for injuries in a trampoline accident against Smyths Toy Store, where she had purchased the trampoline.

A forensic engineer was consulted to determine the cause of the accident. After an investigation, the forensic engineer stated that the mechanism for securing the safety club to the frame was in adequate for purpose. Smyths Toy Store admitted liability for Kevin’s accident. Compensation of €25,000 for injuries in a trampoline accident was negotiated on his behalf.

As Kevin was a minor at the time of the accident, the sum was brought before a judge for approval. Mr Justice Raymond Groarke heard the case at the Circuit Court in Dublin. He refused the settlement, claiming it as too small of an amount considering the extent of Kevin’s injuries. Smyths Toy Store increased the offer to €35,000, which the judge approved. The judge heard that Kevin had recovered very well from his injuries.

FSAI REISSUES FROZEN BERRY ALERT, HEPATITIS A COMPENSATION GROWS MORE LIKELY

It is now likely that there will be an increase in injury claims for compensation due to Hepatitis A infection from imported frozen berries after the Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) issued another safety warning over the products.

The FSAI issued a warning in the summer of last year for consumers to boil frozen berries imported to Ireland for at least a minute before consumption in order to destroy the virus present. This notification is a result of such produce being found responsible for a number of cases of the virus in those who ate them without taking such measures beforehand.

Across Europe, 1,140 cases of unexplained Hep A have been diagnosed  in the past twelve months. Of these, 331 cases were later attributed to the virus being found in frozen berries, including 21 cases in Ireland. These diagnoses prompted the FSAI to reissue their previous alert to boil the frozen fruit in order to prevent such infection.

Although there is no evidence that Irish frozen berries are responsible for the spread of the disease, and fresh berries also do not seem to be at fault, the chief executive of the FSAI-Professor Alan Reilly-encourages consumers to wash any piece of fruit before eating it.

It is expected that there will be a new wave of compensation claims due to infection by the Hepatitis  A virus as a result of consumption of such berries as a result of the reissued warning. The victim is able to make such a claim against any retailer that sold them the berries containing the virus. However, symptoms of the disease can take up to fifty days to show. Therefore, even if a retailer unwittingly sold such a product before the FSAI issued its new warning and therefore had no time to remove imported berries from the shelves, they are still liable to pay compensation to anyone affected by the virus.

The possession of a receipt, or any other proof of purchase, is not a requirement for a victim to make a claim for compensation due to injury from eating infected berries. As long as they have been diagnosed with Hep A that is suspected to have originated from eating contaminated goods, a successful claim can still be made against the retailer in question.

DUBLIN CITY COUNCIL MUST PAY COMPENSATION TO BIN LORRY INCIDENT VICTIM

Padraig Hearns (39) has been awarded compensation from Dublin City Council after being run over by a bin lorry in Dublin City, resulting in severe brain damage.

Padraig was lying on the street after being attacked during a night out in the Dublin Temple Bar area in April of 2007. Hurt and confused after the assault, he was unable to move out of the way before a bin lorry operated by Dublin City Council run him over, causing a fractured skull and severe arm injuries.

He was immediately brought to hospital, where he was treated for injuries to his head, arm and eye. He was put into an induced coma for a week, and spent several months following the incident confined to hospital to recover from the traumatic event.

Despite the level of care he received, Padraig sustained brain trauma and is now unable to care for himself. He is now dependant on his parents and siblings for his care, living in his parent’s home. He is also unable to return to work again in his life.

His parents made a claim for compensation from Dublin City Council on Padraig’s behalf for the bin lorry injury sustained. The defendants denied liability for the accident. Their solicitors argued that they were not at fault for Padraig lying in the path of the lorry, and therefore could not be held responsible.

The case was brought to the High Court, where it was heard by Mr Justice Michael Peart. The judge pointed out to the defendants that Dublin City Council had ignored its own by-laws that had been introduced mere months before the incident; they were not permitted to collect waste from the Temple Bar area between 12:00pm and 6:00pm, which they had been doing at the time of the incident.

Judge Peart also pointed out that the City Council had a duty of care to ensure that the scene was safe for the truck to move through the area by having an employee outside of the truck to survey the area. They had failed in this duty when they neglected to notice Padraig lying on the road beneath the lorry.

The judge further commented that “It makes complete sense from a public safety point of view that these large refuse trucks would not be permitted to try and negotiate their way through an area such as the narrow and crowded streets of Temple Bar when so many people are present”.

A settlement of €4,885,888 in injury compensation for the bin lorry accident was awarded to Padraig. This was the sum of €266,341 for loss of earnings, €155,230 for care costs to date, €350,000 for his suffering and €3,485,000 to cover his future care costs. The City Council also had to pay for legal costs covering the trial.

 

HIGH COURT APPROVES SETTLEMENT FOR INJURIES CAUSED IN HIT AND RUN CASE

A settlement of €1.2 million has been awarded to a woman who suffered extensive injuries and lost opportunities as a result of a hit and run incident with a drunk driver in June of 2009.

Laura Byrne, then twenty-one, was walking with friends on the street in Wexford when she was hit by a vehicle driven by Karl Chrzan, who was intoxicated at the time. Laura was thrown into the air, landing on the bonnet of the car. Her head cracked against the windscreen of the car, causing major trauma. The student was immediately brought the Waterford Regional Hospital for initial treatment of her injuries, but later had to be transferred to a hospital in Cork to receive specialist care.

Laura was forced to abandon her studies in veterinary science as a result of the complications of the injury. Her balance had been severely affected, and suffered bouts of double-vision. Her left arm continuous to be physically weaker than her right to this day.

Chrzan immediately fled the scene in the vehicle following the incident, citing his panicked state as the cause of these actions. Following a police investigation, it was revealed that he had consumed multiple beers and vodka before taking control of the vehicle.

He was charged and arrested by the Gardaí for the hit and run incident. Chrzan was sentenced to three years in prison for dangerous driving that resulted in serious harm. He was also banned from driving for six years following the incident.

Laura made a claim for compensation as a result of her hit and run injury against the Motor Insurers Board of Ireland (MIBI). The vehicle involved in the incident was Chrzan’s partner’s, and he was not insured to drive it, resulting in MIBI having to settle the compensation claim. The sum of €1.2 million was negotiated as adequate settlement.

Ms Justice Mary Irvine approved the settlement at the High Court in Dublin. She noted that it was good compensation considering the circumstances of the case, although no sum of money could consolidate the trauma that the young student had experienced. The judge further hoped that the money would make Laura’s life more comfortable for her following the incident.

COMPENSATION AWARDED TO EMPLOYEE INJURED AFTER SLIP AND FALL INJURY IN WORKPLACE

The High Court has awarded a compensation settlement to an employee of Dunnes Stores for an injury that was the result of a slip and fall incident in the workplace.

In July 2011, Dorota Michalowska (29) was working in the canteen of Dunnes Stores in Clonmel, Country Tipperary. As she was clearing the tables and moving items to the kitchen to be cleaned, she slipped on a frozen chip that was on the floor. The fell to the ground, and damaged the soft tissue of her knee.

Dorota was forced to undergo physiotherapy for her injury, which left her largely immobilised. She was unable to work for thirty-five weeks after the incident occurred. She sought legal advice, and decided to make a claim against her employer for a canteen slip and fall injury to seek compensation for the time during which she was rendered unable to work.

The defendant denied any liability for Dorota’s injury. Their solicitors argued that the victim herself had been responsible for preparing a large quantity of the food, and it was plausible that it was her own fault that there had been a frozen chip on the floor. Therefore, Dorota’s own negligence was the cause of the injury, and Dunnes Stores was not at fault.

The case went to the High Court, where it was heard by Ms Justice Mary Irvine. Evidence was given by both parties. The judge remarked that Dorota had not been working on her own in the canteen that day; two colleagues shared her responsibilities. Therefore, “on the balance of probabilities”, it was more probable that either of them had dropped the chip as opposed to Dorota herself. She ruled that Dunnes Stores was liable for the injury due to the negligence of its staff to pick the chip up. She also noted that had the victim dropped the chip herself, it would have defrosted by the time Dorota had finished her tasks around the canteen and slipped on it, hence making it even more unlikely that Dorota was responsible for her knee injury.

A further payment of €20,000 was awarded to account for Dorota’s future pain, as it is likely that she will suffer from arthritis in future as a result of her injuries.

JUDGE APPROVES COMPENSATION FOR MISSED DIAGNOSES OF KNEE INJURY

The High Court in Dublin has approved a compensation settlement for medical negligence to a woman whose knee fracture was missed upon initial examination.

Amy Rose McGowan (31) was in training to participate in the Special Olympics World Games when she fell and damaged her knee while practicing  for the 50 metre race. She was immediately brought to Our Lady’s Hospital, Navan, where she was attended to. X-rays were taken of the area, and she was told that she suffered soft tissue damage to her knee. The joint was strapped for support, and she was released without further care.

However, a month after the accident, Amy Rose developed increased pain in the area. She consulted her GP, who subsequently diagnosed Amy Rose with a depressed fracture. The injury had been overlooked at the hospital during her initial consultation. Unfortunately, due to the late diagnoses, it was too late to perform the necessary corrective surgery. Amy Rose was no longer able to train to compete in the Special Olympics in Athens, scheduled to take place in 2011.

On behalf of her daughter, Charlotte McGowan made a claim against the Health Service Executive (HSE) for compensation due to the missed knee fracture. She stated that the initial care her daughter had received had been negligent, as well as the missed diagnoses. An investigation was launched into the case.

The HSE admitted liability to the missed diagnoses. They acknowledged that the emergency department overlooked the depressed fracture upon initial inspection. The defendants made an offer of €142,000 as a settlement, which Charlotte agreed upon on behalf of her daughter. However, due to Amy Rose’s intellectual disability, the sum had to be approved by a judge in court.

Mr Justice Michael Peart heard how the athlete’s career had been cut short as a result of the accident, and expressed pity at this statement. Amy Rose had won 34 medals and 10 trophies over her career as a swimmer and athlete, but was unable to continue due to the incident. The judge approved the settlement offered by the HSE.

 

Injuries Caused by Automatic Doors

As their name suggests, automatic doors open automatically – without the need to manually push/pull them using an attached implement such as a bar, knob, or handle – when a person triggers their motion sensor or pushes the appropriate button. These are often found in commercial and industrial establishments, and are meant to make entering and exiting more convenient. Despite their obvious advantage over traditional designs, though, automatic doors have been involved in numerous injury-causing accidents, and have thus been the subject of many complaints and personal injury compensation claims.

What is Negligence? For individuals who suffered physical harm as a result of walking into closed automatic doors, the term “negligence” is very important. Establishing which of the two parties involved in the incident – that is, the individual(s) who experienced the accident and the company/owner of the establishment where the door is located – committed negligence and is thus to blame is a crucial part of both the claims and settlement process. That said, in UK law negligence occurs when one’s carelessness results in harm done to another person. There is no intent to cause harm; however, one’s inability to foresee the negative consequences of an action has resulted in it.

Who is at Fault? The answer to this question is difficult to ascertain – that’s why solicitors are often hired both by the complainant and the defendant to take care of this part. Basically, though, the company or owners of the establishment where the door is placed are liable if they overlooked informing the public of any glitches or issues that resulted in the door being defective and failing to open at the right time. On the other hand, the complainant is at fault if the other party successfully proves the following: they exhausted all reasonable measures to ensure the safety of the people entering and exiting their premises, and the injury the complainant sustained resulted from his own carelessness.

When Can a Claim for Personal Injury Compensation be Made? No personal injury compensation claim can be made if the complainant does not have proof of any physical or psychological injury caused by the accident involving automatic doors. “Proof” in this sense may include wounds, scars, and medical records that indicate treatment after the accident for injuries sustained. If the complainant is an employee of the owners of the establishment, the company’s Accident Report Book can likewise be used to support a personal injury compensation claim.

Is a Court Appearance Necessary? Although the solicitor hired by both parties involved will likely prepare all documents needed should the case reach the UK courts, only a small percentage of similar cases end up with a judge delivering a verdict. More often than not the complainant or plaintiff and the defendant settle out-of-court, in which case a court appearance is unnecessary. Here, negotiations are done with a 3rd party insurer – that is, the insurance company of the defendant – who will be responsible for paying compensation to the victim of the accident. On a related note, the amount that will be received by any individual who has made a successful personal injury claim will largely depend on case circumstances and how much he or she hopes to receive as compensation.

See also: http://www.uksupermarketaccidents.co.uk/

COMPENSATION AWARDED FOR FINGER INJURY SUSTAINED BY CHILD IN SHOP

A young girl has been awarded €10,000 in compensation for an injury sustained to her finger in an incident occurring in a shop in March, 2011.

Naoise Walsh, aged six at the time of the incident, severely lacerated her finger when attempting to remove a drink carton from a refrigerator unit in Debenhams’ café in Henry Street, Dublin. Her finger was caught by the metal grill of the shelf inside the fridge, severely cutting it and causing heavy bleeding.

The emergency services were notified and Naoise was brought by ambulance to Temple Street Children’s Hospital. Her mother accompanied her on the journey. The wound was attended to on site, but required Naoise to revisit the hospital the following day for further checks to the area. Upon further examination, during which Naoise was under general anaesthetic, no extensive damage to the young girl’s tendons could be found. The wound was stitched and dressed before releasing Naoise from hospital later that day.

On behalf of her daughter, Amy Walsh from Bluebell, Dublin, sought legal advice and made a claim for the cut finger injury sustained by her child against Debenhams store. The defendant admitted liability for the incident, and offered a sum of €10,000 in compensation to the girl.

In order for the compensation to be agreed upon, the case was heard by the Circuit Civil Court in Dublin. Court President Mr Justice Raymond Groarke heard the case, and approved the settlement for Naoise of the aforementioned amount. It is a requirement for cases involving compensation for children that such a hearing take place.

 

SETTLEMENT REACHED FOR MAN WHO SUFFERED BRAIN INJURY AFTER FALL IN PUB

A man who suffered brain injuries after falling down the stairs of a Dublin pub has been awarded €250,000 in damages for his injury claim against the establishment.

Frank McHugh (80) fell down the stairs of the Stag’s Head pub while making a trip to the bathroom during a family meal to celebrate Easter weekend in April, 2011.

The claim, alleging that the pub was negligent in ensuring that there was a safe and secure means of accessing the toilets, was made through Frank’s son, Patrick McHugh. Patrick also stated that there were no signs present in the building warning of the precautions that must be taken on the stairwell, and therefore the pub is further at fault.

The pub’s proprietor, Shelbourne O’Brien Ltd, denied liability for accident. They stated that the fault was on Frank himself, as he failed to descend the staircase in a safe and appropriate manner, and the fall was not due to negligence on their part.

CCTV footed was provided as evidence on behalf of Shelbourne O’Brien Ltd to contest the claim. On camera, it can be seen that Frank takes the initial step down the stairs himself, before he proceeds to fall forwards.

The case was heard by Ms Justice Mary Irvine at the High Court in Dublin. She heard that the company was willing to make an offer of a quarter of a million euro as a settlement, despite denying the claims against them. The judge was further informed that the family had been legally advised to accept the sum, despite the fact that the amount was only a small portion of what a full settlement would be if the case went to trial.

The settlement was approved by the judge, despite her acknowledging that it would not cover many of the care costs that were the consequence of the injury. Ms Justice Mary Irvine commented that the claim made my Frank against Shelbourne O’Brien Ltd was unlikely to be successful if there was a full trial, due to lack of evidence implicating the defendants.

COMPENSATION AWARDED TO EMPLOYEE INJURED DURING TEAM-BUILDING EXERCISE ACCIDENT

An employee that sustained a broken wrist injury while participating in a team-building exercise organised by his employer has been awarded compensation outside of court.

Cathal Kavanagh (54), an executive chef in the Carton House Spa and Gold Hotel in Maynooth, County Kildare, attended a team-building day with his colleagues at the Riverbank Arts Centre in Newbridge, where he sustained his injury.

As part of the event, Cathal was required to participate in a series of games and activities with his coworkers. It was during one of these events-a relay race that saw employees of the four-star hotel running backwards-that Cathal fell. His foot slipped form under him, and he fractured his wrist in an attempt to break his fall. Medical treatment was sought, and he received care for his broken wrist.

Cathal sought legal advice from his solicitor. He made a compensation claim for the injuries sustained on the programme against both Carton House and the organisers of the day, JikiJela Ltd of Tubbercurry, County Sligo. A further claim was made against Kildare County Council, the proprietors of the Riverbank Arts Centre.

The victim claimed that the activities had not been safe for participants, and that all of the parties named were negligent as they failed to ensure that no danger would be present for Cathal or his colleagues. All defendants denied liability for his wrist injury, resulting in the Injuries Board authorising the claim to be heard at the Circuit Civil court to resolve the matter.

However, before the first day of the hearing was complete, Mrs Justive Mary Irvine-the judge presiding the case-was informed that compensation for the injury had been settled outside of court and that the claim could be struck out of court.

 

COMPENSATION AWARDED FOR DOG ATTACK INJURY TO YOUNG GIRL

The High Court has awarded compensation of €150,000 to a young girl who suffered injury from a Rottweiler dog  that escaped from its home and attacked her.

On December 26th, 2011, Lauren Kelly of Abbeylara, County Longford was playing outdoors with her family when she was viciously attacked by the animal after it escaped from its home.

Before her family could successfully pull her away from the dog, Lauren sustained numerous teeth and claw injuries to her upper right arm. She was immediately brought to hospital for treatment of these injuries. The girl also had to endure a skin graft operation due to the damages. As a consequence of this, she suffered significant scarring to her arm.

On behalf of his daughter, Michael Kelly made a claim for compensation, asserting that the dog’s owner displayed negligence in allowing the animal to escape and roam the streets where children were likely to be playing. The Rottweiler’s owner, William Crawford, conceded that he was liable for the injury. Compensation was negotiated outside of court.

The claim was heard before Mr Justice Kevin Cross in the High Court in Dublin in order for such a settlement to be approved. While in court, the judge heard how Lauren still suffered nightmares as a result of the incident, and has to wear arm protection while swimming to prevent infection to the affected area.

The settlement of €150,000 was approved as compensation for the dog bite injury. Until Lauren is eighteen years of age, the money shall be held in an interest-bearing account, unless it needs to be accessed by Lauren’s parents to pay for further medical attention as a result of the attack.

COMPENSATION AWARDED FOR HOLIDAYMAKER’S INJURY AT AIRPORT

A holidaymaker who sustained a broken nose after a set of electronic doors closed on him at Dublin Airport has been awarded compensation for his injury.

Thomas and Evelyn Smyth travelled to Dublin Airport from their home in County Cavan in January of 2011 in order to take an Aer Lingus flight to Tenerife. On their way to board to plane, an electronic door that was programmed to automatically shut after some period of time closed on Thomas, breaking his nose in the process.

The sixty-three year old victim was brought to the nearby Beaumont Hospital to receive treatment for the fracture. As a consequence, the couple missed their flight to the Canary Islands, and their holiday was delayed. Flights were reorganised for two days later than planned, but the rest of their holiday was tainted by the incident at the airport.

Upon returning home, the couple sought legal counsel. A claim was made for compensation for his broken nose against both Aer Lingus and the Dublin Airport Authority. While both parties acknowledged that negligence was the cause of the injury, both were also reluctant to admit liability for the incident.

Judge Jacqueline Linnane heard the case the the Circuit Civil Court in Dublin. She heard that a total settlement of €19,000 had agreed to be given as a result of the injury sustained by the victim. However, there had yet to be an agreement over who was liable to pay this sum to Thomas as compensation for the injury sustained at Dublin Airport.

The judge heard that the door was timed to close thirty minutes after it was initially opened by one of flight company’s attendants, and that it was working properly in this manner. In reacting to this evidence, Judge Linnane found Aer Lingus responsible for the accident, stating that if more time was required to board all of the passengers safely onto the plane, then it was their responsibility to request that more time be made available to them from the DAA.

Keeping Your Stairs Safe

Most accidents happen at home. This may sound like a cliché but it is true that a lot of accidents happen right at the comfort of your home where you feel that you are at your safest. This is why it is important to take precautions in order to make your home accident free. One of the most common places where accidents often occur is the stairs. In fact, the stairs can be considered as one of the most dangerous places in your home. Injuries that result from falls from the stairs are most likely to be serious and in some cases fatal. For this reason, it is a must to take steps in order to secure your stairs and prevent accidents from happening.

One of the best ways to prevent accidents in stairs is to keep it in tiptop shape. Regularly inspect your stairs for any lose boards or wood. Check for cracks or anything that may weaken the structure. Conduct minor repairs as needed or if the problem is more widespread affecting various parts of the stairs then it is best to contact a handyman to do the repairs for you.

Another way to keep your stairs safe is to place a rug or a mat on every step to prevent it from becoming slippery. Rubber mats are ideal since they are not slippery and can provide traction. In addition, make sure that the steps are constructed as evenly as possible. Some accidents happen because the steps are uneven and some are too far from the other. This could cause a person to miscalculate his steps and fall. If there are toddlers in your home, a good baby rail should be installed on the stairs to prevent the kids from going down the stairs on their own.

The handrails are also a big factor in keeping your stairs safe. Having two handrails than just one is ideal in order to provide ample support as a person climbs up and down the stairs. Furthermore, make sure that the handrails re not to wide to grip and not slippery.

Keeping you stairs free from debris, clutter and liquid spills is also a surefire way to keep it safe. If something was spilled on the stairs make sure to wipe it off completely and get rid of any wet spot. Furthermore, teach your kids to keep their toys away from the stairs as well as other things that may distract your steps. Avoid running on the stairs as much as possible.

If there are older people in the house, a stairs lift will be a good addition to your stairs. Older people may have a lot of difficulties going up and down the stairs. Their legs and knees are now weaker and they might not be able to see the steps well. A large number of individuals who fall from stairs are those from the older groups so putting a stair lift will eliminate the need from them to walk on the stairs. This will prevent them from getting injured due to falls.

See also: http://www.biggerinjuryclaims.co.uk/

 

COURT AWARDS COMPENSATION TO VICTIM OF DOG BITE INJURY

The Dublin High Court has awarded a settlement of €55,000 to the victim of a dog bite as compensation for his injuries.

Joseph Dunne (63) was working as a postman around Kilbeggan, County Westmeath in October 2008. While delivering post to an address in the area, owned by Ms Olive Dalton and Mr Martin Maher,he was attacked the couple’s husky dog that escaped from the rear house through a hole in the hedge. He was knocked flat by the dog, and sustained injuries from its claws and teeth.

Fortunately, the attack was halted when a passer-by hit the dog’s back with a stick. The emergency services were notified, and Joseph was immediately removed from the scene and escorted to hospital.

The victim received a total of twenty-two stitches to injuries spanning the right side of his face. He also suffered nerve damage to the right side of his forehead. Upon removal of these stitches, it was necessary for Joseph to undergo plastic surgery in an attempt to disguise the resultant scars.

Joseph subsequently sought legal advice, and decided to make a claim for compensation against the dog’s owners for negligence. He claimed that the failed to securely enclose the dog in their garden, and also failed to inform An Post of the dangerous dog living on the property.

Mr Maher and Ms Dalton denied any liability for the injuries sustained by the victim, and the claim went to the High Court, where it was heard by Mr Justice Michael Moriarty.

The judge decided in Joseph’s favour, and awarded him €55,000 of compensation for his dog bite injury. The judge went on to comment that he thought Joseph had been courageous in returning to work as quickly as he did, in spite of the frightening nature of the attack.

The dog was put down by a veterinarian the day following the incident.

COMPENSATION FOR INJURIES TO A FOETUS AS A RESULT OF A ROAD ACCIDENT IS AWARDED IN COURT

A settlement of €17,800 has been awarded by the Circuit Civil Court to a fourteen year old girl who suffered respiratory distress syndrome as a results of her mother going into premature labour two days after being involved in a road accident.

Aoife Sheenan was born two days after her mother, Martina, was involved in a collision on Templeroan Road in April, 1999. Neither Martina nor the other driver, Elaine O’Connor, was injured in the incident. However, the shock of the collision allegedly caused Martina to go into early labour at thirty-six weeks. After two days, Aoife was born at Coombe Hospital in Dublin.

Aoife was immediately transferred to the neo-natal unit and placed on a ventilator after suffering respiratory distress syndrome. She remained there, critically ill, for three weeks while being served medication in an attempt to assist with her breathing. Eventually, the prematurely delivered baby was capable of breathing on her own.

On her daughter’s behalf, Martina sought legal advice in order to make a case for compensation for injuries to the foetus. Arguing that had the accident not occurred, Aoife would not have been born premature, and therefore would not have suffered the illness that she did.

Elaine O’Connor’s insurers denied the claim, citing the fact that there was no medical evidence to support the claim that Aoife was born premature as a result of the incident. They also claimed that premature babies were inherently predisposed to respiratory distress syndrome. Therefore, they claimed that Ms O’Connor was not liable for the injuries.

In spite of these challenges, Martina and Aoife’s solicitors pursued with the claim. Judge Matthew Deery heard the case for foetal injuries in a car crash at the Circuit Civil Court. A settlement was agreed upon, and it was negotiated that Aoife would receive €17,800 for her injuries. The compensation is to be paid in court funds until Aoife reaches the age of eighteen years old.

Accidents in Your Apartment Building

Apartment buildings are the most common places to live in. They are practical and comfortable especially when you are living alone. Most working class individuals live in apartment buildings – for one, they find a building that is very near their place of work because it is cheaper than traveling to and from your house. Accidents can happen instantaneously and you’ll never know where it will have caught up with you.

 

Property and building owners are responsible it maintaining a safe and comfortable environment for their occupants. If you got involved or a loved one was injured as a result of an accident in the building’s premises, you can file for a personal injury compensation claim. A good and reputable personal injury lawyer can help you file a case in court.

 

You might experience any of the following that merits a legal case:

 

  • Tripping hazards like dangerous and deteriorating staircases
  • Wet and slippery floors and hallways
  • Cluttered walking areas
  • Falling objects
  • Defective elevators and other facilities
  • Faulty wirings resulting in short circuits
  • Building fires
  • Smoke detectors that are not functioning
  • Building code violations like the absence of emergency exits and lack of fire extinguishers

 

The list can go on, though, because of the many possibilities that might happen.

 

There are two important considerations when it comes to determining the cause and whose fault the accident was. One, building apartment owners have the legal responsibility of making sure that all tenants of all age groups. They have to ensure that the residents and the loved ones who come for a visit are safe and comfortable living in their building.

 

Two, there could also be a case where the tenant or their visitors are responsible for their own injuries. A perfect example: if the tenant descends the staircase using the handrail and gets injured in the process. Or, a tenant causes fire due to negligence such as leaving the flat iron on causing fire.

 

The argument would then be who is liable: the owner or the tenant. Each party can claim that the other caused the accidents. So if you are a tenant and you’re injured, you will have to make sure that you present all the necessary documents and proof that the building owners were at fault. This can be tricky, though. The building owner would definitely defend themselves. Establishing who is at fault will rely on the proof that will be submitted in court.

 

This is important to take note of: the property owner is responsible for the maintenance of the whole apartment building – from maintaining floors and keeping them clean, staircases that do not have sharp or rough edges, to ensuring that the building is safe and secure from burglars and other unscrupulous individuals. The tenant, on the other hand, will have to be responsible for whatever is inside their apartment.

 

The building owner or the landlord has to meet all the legal obligations that are set for them to follow. Just the same, tenants have to know their rights.

 

Apartment buildings are the most common places to live in. They are practical and comfortable especially when you are living alone. Most working class individuals live in apartment buildings – for one, they find a building that is very near their place of work because it is cheaper than traveling to and from your house. Accidents can happen instantaneously and you’ll never know where it will have caught up with you.

 

Property and building owners are responsible it maintaining a safe and comfortable environment for their occupants. If you got involved or a loved one was injured as a result of an accident in the building’s premises, you can file for a personal injury compensation claim. A good and reputable personal injury lawyer can help you file a case in court.

 

You might experience any of the following that merits a legal case:

 

  • Tripping hazards like dangerous and deteriorating staircases
  • Wet and slippery floors and hallways
  • Cluttered walking areas
  • Falling objects
  • Defective elevators and other facilities
  • Faulty wirings resulting in short circuits
  • Building fires
  • Smoke detectors that are not functioning
  • Building code violations like the absence of emergency exits and lack of fire extinguishers

 

The list can go on, though, because of the many possibilities that might happen.

 

There are two important considerations when it comes to determining the cause and whose fault the accident was. One, building apartment owners have the legal responsibility of making sure that all tenants of all age groups. They have to ensure that the residents and the loved ones who come for a visit are safe and comfortable living in their building.

 

Two, there could also be a case where the tenant or their visitors are responsible for their own injuries. A perfect example: if the tenant descends the staircase using the handrail and gets injured in the process. Or, a tenant causes fire due to negligence such as leaving the flat iron on causing fire.

 

The argument would then be who is liable: the owner or the tenant. Each party can claim that the other caused the accidents. So if you are a tenant and you’re injured, you will have to make sure that you present all the necessary documents and proof that the building owners were at fault. This can be tricky, though. The building owner would definitely defend themselves. Establishing who is at fault will rely on the proof that will be submitted in court.

 

This is important to take note of: the property owner is responsible for the maintenance of the whole apartment building – from maintaining floors and keeping them clean, staircases that do not have sharp or rough edges, to ensuring that the building is safe and secure from burglars and other unscrupulous individuals. The tenant, on the other hand, will have to be responsible for whatever is inside their apartment.

 

The building owner or the landlord has to meet all the legal obligations that are set for them to follow. Just the same, tenants have to know their rights.

 

COMPENSATION AWARDED FOR BACK INJURY IN THE WORKPLACE

A woman has been awarded compensation from her employer, the Community Information and Referral Service in the Australian Capital Territory, after her office chair collapsed. She suffered permanent back damage as a result of the accident, which occurred in 2002.

Terry Anne Downie (51) of Canberra, Australia, fell to the floor when the chair collapsed beneath her. Following an investigation into how to chair failed, it was discovered that a plastic moulding at the base of the chair suffered catastrophic failure as a result of two spokes at the base of the chair breaking.

Emergency services were notified and Terry Anne was taken to hospital. After receiving medical attention, scans of her back revealed that as a consequence of the incident, a disc in her spine bulged, causing it to come into contact with a nerve root. She stills suffers sciatica and pain in her lower back to this day.

Workers compensation was granted to Terry Anne from her employer. Terry Anne, due to her continued discomfort, also made a personal injury claim for compensation eleven years after the incident. The claim was made against the company who imported the chair assembly kit from China, Jantom. A further claim was made against the retailer Fyshwick who assembled the chair to sell to her employer.

Both companies denied liability for Terry Anne’s injuries as a results of her workplace accident. However, a judgement was passed down by the Australian Capital Territory Supreme Court that found the import company Jantom and its insurance provider liable to pay Terry Anne Downie a sum of Au$933,030 in compensation for the injury sustained. A further Au$112,000 special damages was awarded to cover the costs of her medical care.

Her employer, the Community Information and Referral Service was also rewarded Au$441,911 as a result of the compensation that had been paid to Terry Anne since her accident.

Factory Foot Injury Resolved Out of Court

A factory worker from Sheffield has settled his compensation claim for a factory foot injury out of court. Michael Kirby will receive £6,500 after an alloy bar fell on his left foot breaking two metatarsal bones in it.

Mr Kirby pursued compensation for his factory foot injury on the grounds that he had received incorrect safety training when moving alloy bars.

The negligent party Ross & Catherall Limited admitted responsibility for the incident and the claim for a factory foot injury resolved out of court.

For news about personal injuries in the United States, please see here: http://www.accidentsclaimslaw.com/news/

MAJORITY OF MALPRACTICE CLAIMS AGAINST GPS ARE DUE TO MISDIAGNOSES, SAYS RCSI

The Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI) has received a report indicating that most claims for GP malpractice are the result of missed or delayed diagnoses.

The report, compiled by the Centre for Primary Care Research in Dublin, revealed that such claims for compensation frequently featured cases such as medication errors or missed diagnoses. The delay in diagnoses of colon cancer and breast cancer were altogether the cause of more claims of malpractice against GPs than any other form of such medical negligence.

The primary aim of the report was to identify which areas of primary medical care should be the focus of future educational strategies for the medical profession, and when developing risk management systems for such professionals.

Along with breast and colon cancer, cancers of the skin, female genital tract and lungs were all frequently misdiagnosed or identified late. The report indicated that appendicitis and meningitis in were the illnesses most likely to be misdiagnosed in children.

Dr Emma Wallace – the lead researcher of the new report-acknowledged that one of the reasons for the surge of late or missed diagnoses is due to the increase in the number of patients being referred to consultants, often unnecessarily. The number of malpractice claims against GPs in Ireland continues to increase, causing doctors to practice more defensively, this causing the increase in the number of referrals.

According to Dr Wallace, doctors facing such claims offer a reduced level of service and care due to the stress that is associated with such a malpractice allegation. Therefore, more patients are at placed at risk of a medication error or missed diagnosis as a result.

She commented that such a review is “timely considering the increased interest in focusing on primary care as a way of improving patient care and safety”, hoping that a review of this nature would provide an insight into the best way forward in reducing the number of GP malpractice claims in Ireland.

CIRCUIT CIVIL COURT AWARDS COMPENSATION FOR A BURN INJURY

The circuit civil court awarded compensation of €15,565 to the burn injury victim, a refuse worker, who suffered the injury to his left eye.

The accident occurred in July 2011. Kamil Kozlowski (30), employed by Panda Waste Services Ltd, was emptying bins in Sandyford Road when a hydraulic cable on the back of the rubbish truck burst. Hot oil was sprayed from the burst cable, burning his eye in the process. The emergency services were quickly contacted and he was rushed to the Royal Victoria Eye and Ear Hospital after receiving first aid on the scene. His eyes were rinsed, and a course of eye drops was prescribed.

Despite these measures, the victim suffered continued pain in his left eye after the incident. He also experienced issues with his vision. He decided to seek legal advice, and then sought to make a claim for the injury against his employers.

Although Panda Waste Services Ltd admitted that they were liable for the accident, no agreement could be reached over the amount of compensation the victim was entitled to receive outside of court.  As a result, the case was heard by Judge Alison Lindsay and the Circuit Civil Court in Dublin.

The case was heard in court and, as a result, Judge Lindsay decided that Kamil was entitled to compensation of €15,565 for the injury that he suffered.

Accidents on Ships

Ships are the undisputed kings of the ocean. Constructed at such massive dimensions, they can haul tons of people and equipment across different ends of the seas. Also, they possess a marvelous amount of technology and engineering expertise. But even though these gigantic machines are constructed with nothing less than the best stuff, they can still be prone to accidents. Here are just some of the most common types of accidents on ships.

1. Capsizing- While small boats such as the dinghy and the yacht can be righted even after being capsized to a huge degree, larger sea craft such as ships is not constructed that way. In fact, certain ships only have a certain capsizing angle before it is tilted to a point of no return. When a ship gets capsized beyond this particular angle, the boat would simply lie on its side and sink. There are different reasons why these ships capsize, but the biggest cause (both literally and figuratively) is encountering massive waves.

2. Grounding- This is an accident where the ship’s bottom (particularly its hull) makes contact with a shallow portion of the seabed. Depending on the angle of the hit, the speed of the ship, and the roughness/sharpness of the ground, the damage on a ship’s hull may vary. If the hit sustained is significant enough, the ship will start taking in water and can sink unless something drastic is done. This often happens when the ship crew goes into the docks or the coast the wrong way.

3. Cargo shift- This classification of accidents on ships is a major concern for those operating cargo ships. But the fact is this can also happen in other ships. This happens if the cargo is stowed into the ship in uneven function. If the weight of the ship’s cargo is unbalanced towards one side, the logic is the ship’s balance is shifted towards the heavier side, causing it to tilt and even capsize. This can also happen if the cargo is not secured properly, causing it to get swung towards one of the boat’s sides.

4. Fires- A fire on the ship can take place because of different reasons. It can be caused by mechanical failure. It is also commonly caused by failure in the ship’s auxiliary systems such as the electrical system. It can also be caused by the ignition of explosive material such as fuel and gunpowder. If a fire goes out of control in the middle of the sea, huge casualties is almost always a guarantee.

5. Collisions- The boat making contact to foreign objects at sea is a very common reason for a lot of accidents and wrecks. A ship can make contact with other ships or boats due to reasons such as lack of communication, lack of monitoring technology, or sheer lack of attention by the captain and his/her crew. It’s also possible for these ships to make contact with floating objects such as icebergs, beacons, and oil rigs. Depending on how the collision takes place, these accidents on ships can get ugly in a hurry.

HSE Complaints Rise by a Quarter

HSE complaints have risen by more than a quarter in the past year according to figures published by the Health Service Executive (HSE).

6,613 complaints in total were registered during 2012 by the HSE, of which 3,049 dealt with the treatment patients received during the year – a rise of 27 percent over the 2,388 received in 2011 in the same category.

The total number of complaints about the HSE included 805 about unnecessary delays in treatment and time on waiting lists for medical attention, and more than 600 were made in connection with the attitude of hospital staff and their reluctance to communicate with patients.

Further increases were recorded in the number of complaints about clinical judgement (up almost 37 percent) while others were made in connection with  to nursing homes, infection control, cancellation of appointments and hospital beds, rooms and food.

Possibly due to the major increase in the number of complaints about patients´ treatment, only a total of 69 percent of the number of complaints was dealt with within the thirty day limit promised by the HSE, and the highest number of complaints (2,089) originated from the HSE South region.

Note about HSE Complaints

Not all HSE complaints in Ireland develop into compensation claims, but the procedure has to be completed within 12 months of receiving sub-standard care if you wish to claim health service complaints compensation for a loss, an injury or the avoidable deterioration of an existing condition or illness due to the negligence of a medical practitioner.

The specific nature of your injury – and whether you were a public or private patient when you were in receipt of it – will determine how and where the complaint should be made and, to avoid possible contradictions when you later make a claim for compensation, you complaint should always be made after seeking legal advice from an experienced negligence solicitor.

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Accidents in Bars

Bars, also known as night clubs, are dangerous for numerous reasons. Primarily, bars are not well illuminated, so you may stumble anywhere and be harmed. Beer bottles could be dropped causing broken, sharp glass or spillage on dance floors and walkways. There are also bars that are not well maintained with cluttered cables from vending machines, loose carpets or unsafe floorings. Also, most people are intoxicated from alcohol, so they can easily infuriate with the slightest trigger. These things could be dangerous to your safety, since anyone can suffer injuries from accidents or criminal assaults.

It is proven that the food and beverage sector, of which bars are included have 25% more occurrence of accidents for trips, falls and slips compared to other kinds of injuries. These accidents may usually result in dislocated bones, fractures and injuries to the head. Most of these injuries are caused by wet walkways, which could be prevented if the bar owners implement proper safety measures.

The best way to avoid any kind of bar accident is to totally avoid visiting them. However, if you want to have fun, do it safely, Be sure that the bar you want to visit has preventive measures to avoid any kind of accident.

However, if still you had met some kind of accident in bars, you must claim for compensation, particularly if you are not in fault. If you have been injured as a result of bar accident, you can still claim for personal injury. You have a good chance to win your claim if you can prove that the condition of bar premises was the main reason of the accident such as wet walkways without any clear sign, broken glasses on the floor, insufficient safety measures and many more.

You can also claim compensation since a bar is a public place. Similar to any kind of establishment that is open for the public, the bar owner has the responsibility to ensure the safety of their visitors. This means that they must perform necessary actions to protect their patrons from any injury. That is why many bars in Ireland are recommended to purchase public liability insurance.

 

A bar is at fault for a slip accident if the bar owner failed to:

 

  • Employ enough staff so spills, broken glasses could be responded instantly
  • Install safety floor coverings, particularly if the floor is in poor condition
  • Install adequate lighting fixtures on stairs or other areas posing safety risks
  • Act upon cluttered obstacles such as electric cables
  • Replace old furniture that can cause injury to visitors
  • Install protective edges on stairs and danger-prone areas in the bar
  • Install safety bars for visitors with special needs

 

Another kind of bar accident that you can claim for personal injury compensation is the harm caused by their staff like bouncers and waiters. In a bar, there is a high chance that people could become more susceptible to violence if they are under the influence of liquor. Being harmed because of an assault inside the bar is basically categorized as a criminal offense. Just be sure that you are not to blame for your own injury.

 

Compensation Awarded for Stairs Accident

A maintenance officer has had a personal injury claim awarded for a stairs accident after the injuries he sustained forced him into early retirement.

The unnamed 61-year-old from Wakefield in West Yorkshire injured his back when he fell down stairs at West Yorkshire Police Headquarters in November 2008.

 As a result of the injuries he sustained the victim was unable to lift without feeling pain. The judge found in favour of the victim and awarded the claimant £17,000 in injury compensation for a stairs accident.

Compensation Claims Against MoD Cost £17 Million

A Freedom of Information Act request has provided figures that show compensation claims against the MoD (Ministry of Defence) cost £17 million during 2012.

Out of the 137 accidents reported, slips and trips on Ministry of Defence property and injuries sustained in MoD kitchens were the most common compensation claims against MoD.

Overall the amount of compensation paid by the Ministry of Defence in 2012 was an 8 per cent increase on 2011.

 

See also: http://www.biggerinjuryclaims.co.uk/

Plumber Awarded Compensation for Injury

A plumber has been awarded €6,750 in work injury compensation after he broke his ankle when he tripped over a stray wire at Dun Laoghaire Golf Club.

The Circuit Civil Court heard how Barry McGrath from Fingals in Dublin was leaving the premises after finishing work in May 2010 when the accident occurred.

Unable to work Mr.McGrath sought compensation for his injury and although the managers of the site Cosgraves Developments denied liability, Mr Justice Raymond Groarke found in the claimant’s favour.

Hospital found Guilty of Negligence

A ten-year-old boy who sustained severe brain damage leaving him with dyskinetic cerebral palsy has had his compensation claim adjourned for the assessment of damages.

Eoin Murphy of Malahide, County Dublin sustained his brain injury during his birth on the 12th July 2002 after the hospital failed to resuscitate him for seventeen minutes while the paediatric registrar was found after he was born with near total acute hypoxic ischaemia.

Ms Justice Mary Irvine found the Coombe Women’s Hospital guilty of negligence which resulted in the catastrophic brain injury to the boy.

Delivery Man Compensated for Dog Attack

The High Court has awarded a pizza delivery man €7,000 in personal injuries after he was bitten by a dog while delivering advertising leaflets through a letterbox.

 Arpit Khurana (23) had appealed the claim to the High Court after he was bitten by an Alsatian-type dog when he put his hand through the letterbox in October 2009. Mr.Khurana was treated in hospital for the injury to his finger as a result of the bite and received a tetanus shot.

Mr. Khurana had his claim dismissed by Mr Justice Matthew Deery at the Circuit Court in February 2012 after the judge deemed that the claimant had no legal right to put his hand through the letterbox. Mr. Khurana appealed hios claim to the High Court where Ms Justice Iseult O’Malley deemed that Vincent and Bernie Fitzgerald of Portobello, Dublin who were the owners of the dog, were liable as the back of the letterbox did not extend the full depth of the aperture. The judge said ‘It seems to me entirely possible the dog in fact got its nose under the flap and managed to bite his hand.”

Mr.Khurana was awarded €7,000 in compensation for the dog bite injury as well as costs for the two court cases.

Garda Compensated for Ramming Incident

A Garda who sustained hip and leg injuries in a car accident where his colleague died, has been awarded €45,000 in compensation for his injuries.

Garda Bernard McLoughlin and colleague Garda Gary McLoughlin had their patrol car rammed by a car driven by Martin McDermott, of Raphoe, County Donegal in December 2009. Garda Gary McLoughlin died as a result of injuries he suffered in the incident. Garda Bernard McLoughlin was unable to continue with his duties and has taken a leave of absence to study in Australia.

McDermott was sentenced to eight year in prison for manslaughter in July 2011. Awarding Garda Bernard McLoughlin the compensation Ms Justice Irvine acknowledged the severe trauma Garda McLoughlin went through.

Former Miss Ireland Awarded Compensation for Fall

A former Miss Ireland has been awarded €13,150 in compensation after she fell on a travelator at Superquinn Shopping Centre in December 2007.

Nuala Holloway Casey (60) from Blackrock in Dublin sustained an ankle injury after she caught the heel of her shoe on the moving walkway. The Circuit Civil Court heard how Ms Holloway Casey had to give up tennis as a result of her injury.

Although the defendants Secret Retail Holdings (trading as Superquinn Shopping Centre) and Kine (Ireland) Limited admitted liability for her injuries, the amount of compensation she was entitled to claim was disputed as she did not visit a doctor about her injuries until 10 days later and also due to the fact that her injury was exacerbated by a separate fall in 2009.

After reviewing the evidence Judge Barry Hickson awarded the claimant €12,000 in compensation along with an additional €1,250 in expenses.

Compensation Settlement for € 9 million Agreed

Two years after Brid Courtney was awarded an interim payment of € 2 million for brain injury after delayed hospital action during her birth, the High Court has approved a settlement of compensation for her injury.

An expert told the court that a further € 9 million would be needed to provide adequate care for the nine-year-old for the rest of her life.

The child suffered catastrophic brain damage after hospital staff allegedly failed to react to a dramatic change in her heart pattern during her birth at Tralee General Hospital in February 2003. The brain injury has left the girl confined to a wheelchair and unable to speak.

Ms Justice Mary Irvine agreed with the expert and awarded the victim – represented by her mother – € 9 million.

Compensation Claim for Ryanair Injury Settled

A woman has settled her compensation claim for falling down the steps of a Ryanair plane for an undisclosed sum.

Malgorzata Jeneralczyk (57), from Poznan, Poland slipped on the wet steps of a plane as she was disembarking it at Dublin airport.

She suffered a laceration to her left eyebrow and bruising to her body as a result of the fall. Ms Jeneralczyk sought legal advice and made a compensation claim against Ryanair for what she believed was a failure by the company to provide a passenger with safe transit. Ryanair disputed the claim but shortly before the hearing was due to begin, the court heard the claim had been settled.

Compensation Agreed for Child Injured in Baseball Game

A child who suffered permanent brain damage as a result of an injury sustained while playing baseball has been awarded 14.5 million dollars in compensation in an out of court settlement.

 Steven Domalewski was twelve years old when the accident occurred in 2006; he was hit in the chest so hard with a baseball that he suffered a cardiac arrest. He was successfully revived but sustained severe brain damage after his brain was starved of oxygen.

His family initiated a compensation claim on his behalf alleging that the metal baseball bat used to strike the ball that caused his injury should not have been allowed in a children’s game. Little League Baseball denied liability for the injury arguing that the baseball bat was safe to use.

However solicitors for the family argued that when Little League Baseball reduced the strength of the metal bats to bring them in line with the wooden bats used in games, there was an eighty per cent reduction in pitcher injuries.

The case was due to begin at the State Superior Court in Passaic County when it was announced that compensation had been agreed between the two parties.

Baby Seat Recall in America

Baby chairs manufactured by Bumbo have been recalled by the American Consumer Product Safety Commission following concerns about their safety. The chairs are sold in Ireland by various retailers and are popular for babies aged between 3 and 10 months.

The chairs have been found to be unstable when used by active children and serious injuries have sustained by children when the chairs have been rocked from side-to-side or leant backwards

Parents in Ireland have been advised to avoid sitting their children in the chairs until they have received a restraint from the vendor that sold them the chair. The recall does not apply to Ireland at the moment but if your child has suffered an injury as a result of the chair you are advised to speak with a personal injury solicitor as you may be entitled to compensation.

Compensation Approved for Tricycle Injury

The High Court has approved a compensation settlement of €100,000 for a child who suffered head and leg injuries after being hit by a car while on his tricycle.

Bartosz Zakrzewski from Birr, County Offaly was cycling along An Coran Street in Birr when a car driven by Caitríona Kelly hit the boy throwing several meters from his tricycle. He sustained head injuries, cuts and lacerations to his body as well as a broken leg. Bartosz Zakrzewski was just nine-years-old when the accident occurred in July 2010.

Claiming on behalf of her son, Monika Zakrzewski argued that Ms Kelly had breached her duty of care. Ms Kelly denied this and the case was set to be heard by the High Court, however an agreement to settle Bartosz´s claim for tricycle injury compensation was reached without the negligent party admitting to liability and Ms Justice Mary Irvine approved the settlement.

Settlement Approved for Man who Fell from Scaffolding

The High Court has approved a settlement of €750,000 in compensation for a man who fell three meters from a scaffolding tower while he was helping his brother make repairs to the roof of his house.

Patrick Rayner from Mitchelstown, County Cork suffered his fall in heavy rain in December 2008 and sustained a fractured skull in Killmallock, County Limerick. Mr.Rayner suffered hearing loss, a reduction in his taste and sell senses and now suffers frequent headaches.

The victim claimed that the scaffolding had not been secured to a permanent structure and therefore his brother had failed to provide him with a duty of care for his safety. Mr.Rayner’s brother did not dispute his liability and the settlement of €750,000 had already been agreed leaving Ms Justice Mary Irvine to approve the settlement.

Court Approves Compensation for Toy Shop Accident

A five-year-old girl left with permanent scarring as a result of an child accident while visiting Hamley’s toy store has had had her compensation settlement for the injury she sustained approved by Mr Justice Matthew Deery at the Circuit Civil Court.

Brianna Healy from Ballinteer, Dublin fell and hit her head in the store on the 23rd February 2009 when she was just two-years-old, leaving her with a facial scar for the rest of her life.

As the family had not been satisfied with the store’s original offer of compensation, they had sought legal advice and in the end received a revised offer of € 27,500 which they were happy to accept and which Mr Justice Matthew Deery approved.

See also: https://www.uk-personal-injuries.co.uk/

Slips, Trips and Falls the Most Common Reason for Seeking Compensation

Slips, trips and falls are the most common reasons for pursuing work injury compensation in Ireland according to figures released by the Injuries Board.

The figures show that €22,500,000 was assessed by the board in 2011 in relation to work injury claims. Many of the injuries suffered were also due to poor manual handling practices and the use of defective equipment.

The amount marks a fall from the figure assessed in 2010 but InjuriesBoard.ie chief executive Patricia Byron did not agree that workplace health and safety in Ireland was improving saying, ‘While our figures point to a downward trend in the number of claims for workplace accidents, the main driver for this is a contracting workforce rather than any notable advances in workplace health and safety programmes’.

Girl Suffering from Erbs Palsy Settles with Hospital

A 14-year-old girl from Cork has had a compensation settlement for €700,000 approved by the High Court after she was born with Erbs Palsy in 1998.

Aoife James (14) from Douglas in Cork suffers from the birth injury which was caused by the over-extension of the nerves between the neck and shoulder during delivery. Usually the injury heals but in this case the condition remained on her right hand side. Aoife’s condition has not improved despite intense physiotherapy and two operations and she is still unable to carry out basic tasks such as wash herself or dry her hair using her right arm.

Claiming on behalf of her daughter Carol James is making the claim for compensation on the basis that her injury was caused by medical negligence by consultant obstetrician Patrick Kieran of the Cork Clinic, Western Road, Cork during her birth which the family were willing to accept.

RTE Employee Awarded Compensation for Work Injury

An RTE employee has been awarded €18,500 after he suffered an elbow injury while working on the set of the Saturday Night Show.

The Circuit Civil Court heard that Arthur McMullan (59) of Goatstown, Dublin fell while he was trying to unsnag a curtain that has caused continuous problems on the set. Mr.McMullan fell over a studio floor lamp sustaining his injury elbow in February 2010 and as a result is still suffering from elbow pain, two years later.

An RTE colleague supported his compensation claim stating that the curtain had been an ongoing problem that was not remedied by RTE. Judge Jacqueline Linnane found in favour of the claimant.

Boy’s has Compensation Settlement with Hospital Approved

A boy who suffered brain damage during his birth and now has cerebral palsy has had his compensation settlement for birth injury approved by the High Court in Dublin.

 Kyle McMahon from Nenagh in County Tipperary was born at the St Munchin’s Regional Maternity Hospital in Limerick. Labour had been induced to speed up his birth as his mother Theresa McMahon had been admitted to hospital due to high blood pressure. During the birth however Kyle was starved of oxygen and now requires round-the-clock care as a result of the injuries he sustained.

Claiming on his behalf his mother argued that his injury could have been avoided if the situation had been handled better. The Health Service Executive and St Munchin’s Regional Maternity Hospital did not dispute the allegations and a settlement was agreed.

Compensation Settlement Approved for Child Accident Victim

A young Dublin boy has had a compensation settlement of €17,500 approved by the Circuit Civil Court for a traffic accident. Six-year-old Warren Lavelle of Tallaght, Dublin was knocked down by a van while playing near his home when he was just three years old on July 13th 2008. He sustained head injuries in the incident and as a result was left with a permanent scar on his head.

John Connors, also of Tallaght, Dublin was the driver of the van and he admitted responsibility for the incident. Judge Jacqueline Linnane approved the compensation settlement.

See also: https://www.uk-personal-injuries.co.uk/special-damages

 

Former Ryanair Employee Awarded Compensation for Work Injury

A former Ryanair baggage handler who sustained a back injury while moving aircraft stairs unassisted has been awarded €45,000 compensation in the High Court.

Damian Warcaba of Malahide, County Dublin was absent from work for two months as a result of his injury. Ryanair argued that adequate training is provided to staff and Mr.Warcaba to not adhere to the practices set out. The company said he had breached operating protocols and was solely responsible for the injury sustained.

However Mr Justice Peter Charleton ruled in favour of the claimant as Ryanair failed to provide sufficient workers to ensure the protocols set out could be followed.

Shopping Centre Agrees Settlement with Teen

A Dublin teenager has had a compensation settlement of €36,800 approved by the Circuit Civil Court.  Michael Hogan (16) of Firhouse, County Dublin suffered severe lacerations to his thigh when climbing over a car park fence in a supermarket in 2006 when he was 11 years old.

He caught his leg on a protruding nail, leaving him with a serious gash at the F Firhouse Shopping Centre. The injury left him with a permanent scar on his thigh. The owners of Firhouse Shopping centre – Colverton Limited – accepted responsibility for the injury and Mr Justice Matthew Deery approved the settlement directing that the amount should be invested in court funds until Michael´s 18th birthday in March 2015.

Wrong Medication Leads to Patient Deaths

Four patients died while in hospital care between January 2004 and December 2010 after they were given medication to which they had a known allergy. These figures were released by the State Claims Agency which is responsible for the clinical indemnity scheme on behalf of the healthcare system.

Earlier this year figures were released showing that over a seven year period 35,310 incidents were recorded and in certain instances patients became ill and had to be admitted to intensive care in the hospital.124 of these resulted in a compensation claim for medical negligence due to a reaction to a known allergen. Studies carried out show that many of the errors were due to the complicated system in place for administrating medicine.

Patient lobby groups believe that treatment incidents are still under-reported in Ireland despite the acknowledgment of more than 5,000 medication errors each year.

Farm Accident Deaths Remain High

The number of farm related deaths for 2011 may surpass last year’s 20 year high a conference in Dublin organised by the Health and Safety Authority, Teagasc and the Farm Safety Partnership Advisory Committee heard yesterday. The fatality figures have already reached 16 for the year, in 2010 there were 26 deaths in total for the year.

Accidents with machinery and falls have been attributed as the cause of the majority of farm work injuries. The event which is the first time an international meeting on agricultural occupational health and safety had been held in Ireland was attended by Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney who said, ‘People working on farms need to be more conscious of safety requirements, in particular since in many instances they are working on their own. A significant change in mindset is required if we are to prevent further serious farm accidents’.

Dublin Bus Admit Liability for Injury to Woman

A woman has been awarded €121,493 after she sustained spinal injuries when she hit her head on the roof of the bus she was travelling in after it drove over a speed ramp too quickly. Ciara Whelan (23) from Drumcondra, Dublin sustained the injury in April 2006 as the bus drove through Connolly Memorial Hospital.

Ciara was admitted to hospital where she spent 8 days being treated for a crush fracture of the L3 lumbar vertebra.  The High Court heard how she had to wear a neck brace for three months and still suffers from back pain.

Dublin Bus admitted liability for her injuries leaving Mr Justice John Quirke to determine the value of her compensation claim.

Woman Compensated for Hair Colouring Accident

A woman from Galway has been awarded €45,000 after her hair was ruined following a hair colouring treatment at a Galway hair salon. Aileen Dunleavy (40) from Salthill, County Galway claimed for compensation against Hair Republic of Galway when her hair began to fall out following a visit to the salon in March 2007.

Ms Dunleavy claimed that the stylist failed to inform her about the effect the hair colouring treatment may have on her and that it was applied by a stylist who was not sufficiently qualified to do the job required. The High Court heard that the claimant who is works as an artist and painter, suffered emotional trauma as a result of the injury.

Mr Justice Iarfhlaith O´Neill awarded her €45,000 in damages stating that the salon was completely at fault for the accident.

Boy Awarded Damages for Fall

A Dublin boy has been awarded €20,000 in compensation after he sustained serious cuts when he fell on broken glass in a laneway.

Christopher Connors of Rathfarnham, Dublin had been playing soccer near his home on October 2009 when he fell on broken glass and suffered a laceration to his left arm. The Circuit Court heard how he required surgery on his arm and that South Dublin County Council were responsible for keeping the halting site where he lived clean and safe.

As a result of the injury, the boy may suffer problems with his arm later in life. Judge Deery approved Injuries Board assessment of damages of 20,000 Euros and a further 1,206 Euros in special damages.

Bus Driver Awarded Compensation After Fall at Work

A female bus driver has been awarded €553,000 in compensation after a fall on a stairwell meant that she had to take early retirement. In December 2003 Susan Conaty (52), of Arklow, County Wicklow, was walking up a stairwell to the canteen at the Dublin Bus Donnybrook depot when she slipped on liquid split on the landing area. Ms Conaty suffered severe injuries after she fell eight to ten steps and in the end had to retire in 2006 due to the injuries she sustained.

By allowing staff to take drinks from the canteen Mr Justice Iarhflaith O’Neill deemed Dublin Bus to be responsible for her work injuries and awarded her €553,000 in damages.

Road Accident Victim Awarded Whiplash Compensation

A man has been awarded almost €16,000 in compensation after he claimed that his weight loss program had been affected by injuries he sustained in a car crash.

Declan O’Hora (45) of Blessington, County Wicklow sustained injuries to his neck and shoulders in the accident which occurred in October 2008. He claimed that as a result of the injuries he was unable to continue with swimming exercises that helped with his weight loss.

The driver of the other vehicle – Brian Duggan of Knocklyon, County Dublin – had admitted that he was responsible for the accident leaving Justice Matthew Deery to determine the amount of compensation to be awarded for the accident.

Compensation Approved for Girl Bitten By Dog

A girl has had her personal injury settlement of €5,500 approved by the Circuit Court after she was bitten by a dog during a family holiday in Dublin. Ciara Hill (12) was attacked by a dog owned by the Finnstown House Hotel, County Dublin while she was staying there in July 2007.

Claiming on her daughter’s behalf, the child’s mother said the incident had left her daughter traumatised. As with all settlements involving those aged under 18, it had to be first approved in court before payment could be made in accordance with the law. Approving the settlement the judge observed that her injuries had healed quickly and were not significant.

Doctor Found Liable for Severe Brain Damage

The doctor who oversaw the birth of 13-year-old girl that was left with severe disabilities after he delayed her birth for no apparent reason has been found liable for a 3.75 million euro medical negligence settlement that was agreed previously in her case.

The High Court heard that consultant obstetrician; Dr. Raymond Howard delayed the birth of Nicole Hassett of Clonmel, County Tipperary by over half an hour on November 15 1997 for ‘absolutely no apparent reason’. In the original court action the settlement was agreed against the South Eastern Health Board (now the Health and Safety Executive – HSE) with Dr. Howard and the UK-based Medical Defence Union as third parties but Mr Justice Iarfhlaith O’Neill ruled that Dr.Howard was liable as he failed to adequately perform his duties and failed to provide the child with a duty of care.

Teen Awarded €40,000 for fall

A Dublin teenager who suffered serious injuries to his left hand that required extensive surgery at Temple Street Children’s Hospital has been awarded €40,000 in the High Court due to Dublin City Council’s failure to clear broken glass from a public footpath outside his home.

The accident occurred in 2001 when Nathan Clarke of Ballymun, County Dublin was aged seven-years-old. The child accident claim against Dublin City Council was made on behalf of Nathan by his father Joseph Clarke and the High Court found in favour of the claimant.

€2 million Partial Settlement for Birth Injury Agreed

A partial settlement of €2 million has been agreed in the High Court for a baby who suffered a serious birth injury during her birth.

Brid Courtney was born at Tralee General Hospital but their failure to deliver the baby as soon as possible allegedly caused her to suffer brain damage. Claiming on behalf of her daughter Deirdre Courtney is also arguing that the hospital did not take account a sudden change in the heart rate pattern of the baby.

The Health Service Executive (HSE) agreed to the settlement but did not admit liability.

Class Action Debate Re-opened

The debate about class action suits which is also known as collective redress is to be reopened by the European Commission. They are seeking to develop common standards for dealing with compensation for faulty products across the 27 member states in the European Union. A paper has been drafted by three EU commissioners and public consultations will begin in November.

Some of the issues covered in the brief have been revealed by the Financial Times such as financing class action suits, avoiding abusive litigation, making class actions cheaper than individual claims, , consensual resolutions through mediation and enforcing judgements throughout the EU.

Previous attempts at this have failed due to concerns about costs.

‘Medical Accident’ to blame for Death of Young Woman

The coroner’s court has determined that a medical accident led to the death of a woman who was mistakenly diagnosed with a migraine by the Mid-Western Regional Hospital in Limerick.

One month later the 21-year-old died from a large subarachnoid haemorrhage.  The error came despite the victim’s repeated requests for a brain scan. The Health and Safety Executive has apologised to the deceased family and made a compensation payment. The Jury has recommended that patients who complain of persistent and severe headaches should in future; receive Cat scans as soon as possible.

Judge Dismisses Whiplash Claim

A woman who was seeking €410,000 in damages for a loss of earnings as a result of injuries sustained in a car accident has had her claim dismissed by Mr Justice John Quirke. The judge it was likely the claimant gave misleading evidence regarding her injuries and capacity to work.

Mary Farrell of Finglas South, County Dublin claimed she suffered whiplash injuries which left her incapacitated after she was involved in an accident with one of the Dublin Bus fleet on June 14th 2004 at the junction of North Circular Road and Dorset Street.

Dublin bus presented evidence to court showing Ms.Farrell mowing her lawn, seemingly unaffected by her injuries, the company also had evidence that she enjoyed a very comfortable lifestyle which was at odds with her claim for a loss of earnings.

Mr. Justice Quirke was left with no alternative but to dismiss the case.

Courts Approves Settlement of €4.7 million for a Child Birth Injury

A child left with serious brain damage after complications with his birth has been awarded €4.7 million in the High Court.  Although the claim has been settled, the Bon Secours Hospital in Cork did not admit medical negligence in the case, telling the family it was ‘just one of those events’.

Colm Daly was born on July 12 2000, his health worsened when he was a month old and it was subsequently found that a small blood vessel in his brain had burst and did not clot properly. As a result he will be left with life-long physical and mental problems.

The settlement of €4.7 million plus costs was approved in court by Mr Justice Vivian Lavan.

 

See also: http://www.ukmedicalnegligencesolicitors.co.uk/

Family Awarded Compensation After Woman Killed in Crash

The family of a woman who was killed in a car driven by a drunk driver have been awarded €506,000 in damages by the High Court. Bridget O’Reilly of Ballybeg, Waterford was 42-years-old when she died as result of a head-on collision due to the fact that the driver of the car she was a passenger in, was drunk.

Mrs O’Reilly’s husband Edward O’Reilly made the compensation claim and the court heard how the drunk driver of the car Frank Prendergast of Tallaght, County Dublin lost control of the vehicle and crashed into another car.

The accident occurred at Powerstown, County Carlow in July 2002, Mrs O’Reilly leaves behind a husband and nine children.

Fireman Settles Compensation Claim

A fireman who fell from a ladder after being ordered by a superior to climb it, has settled a High Court personal injury claim before the jury had the opportunity to award a sum.

Vincent McGuinness, a fireman from Dundalk, County Louth fell five-meters when his ladder collapsed while fighting a fire at a derelict house at Culhane Street, Dundalk in February 2004. He suffered a vertebra injury and was unable to work for five months. It was argued that the hydraulic ladder on the fire truck should have been used instead, the council denied liability for the accident but the High Court was later informed that the claim had been settled.