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. 

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