In Ireland, special damages for personal injuries are additional components of a personal injury settlement that results from a claim made through the Injuries Board Ireland. Their primary purpose is to compensate for expenses that were a direct result of the accident for which one is claiming, including losses in earnings that may have resulted from the incident.
However, for special damages to be added to a compensation settlement, there mist be appropriate receipts and invoices submitted to corroborate the claim. This may entail showing proof of medical treatment, vehicular damage and corresponding alternate transport costs, etc.. Should the claim involve the death of a loved one, the family may claim for funeral costs under special damages.
If the claimant is being compensated for loss of earnings, their weekly salary is calculated based on his or her annual pay; however, any sick leave or related benefits provided from the workplace will be deducted. The claimant may also receive compensation for projected loss of earnings because of their injuries.
Claiming Special Damages for Personal Injuries
It is important to speak to a solicitor as soon as possible after an accident occurs; the Injuries Board Ireland have unclear guidelines outlining what exactly is considered a “special damages cost”. As such, without guidance, the claimant may invoke an expense that he or she may not be able to reclaim when seeking compensation. However, this should not prevent treatment, but rather influence other associated costs.
The solicitor will ask for evidence of the long-term impacts of the injury, including how it has impacted the victim’s life and employment prospects. He or she will then ask for a review of the costs already incurred by the accident, as well as any current and projected costs. The solicitor will then advise their client on what expenses they can claim under special damages.
These damages will then be submitted to the Injuries Board Ireland, alongside the personal injuries claim.
As with any victim of an accident for which they are not at fault, it is advisable that those hoping to claim special damages should seek legal counsel as soon as possible after the accident has occurred. This can ensure the claimant has adequate evidence to support the claim, but also can prevent costs that may not be eligible for special damages compensation from being incurred.