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Big Jump in Workplace Injury Compensation Settlements

Posted: April 3rd, 2015

The Injuries Board Annual Review for 2014 has revealed a substantial increase in the average value of workplace injury compensation settlements.

Although the Injuries Board Annual Review for 2014 indicated a general stabilisation in the number of workplace injury claims, the average value of workplace injury settlements increased by almost 12% from €28,886 in 2013 to €32,134 in 2014.

One exceptional employer liability claim – which resulted in an assessment of €972,898 – was partially responsible for increasing the average value of workplace injury compensation settlements, which over the course of the year totalled €20.1 million.

The Injuries Board figures do not account for any workplace injury compensation settlements that were resolved by negotiation prior to the Injuries Board completing its assessment, or any workplace injury claims in which liability was contested and the claim had to be resolved in court.

31,576 applications for assessment were received by the Injuries Board last year (including motor liability and public liability claims) and, after the Injuries Board had completed its assessments, 12,420 settlements were accepted (39%).

The acceptance rate is significantly higher than the previous year due to a large volume of applications being received towards the end of 2013 which were only resolved last year. Nonetheless, Patricia Byron – the Chief Executive of the Injuries Board was satisfied with the performance of her organisation over 2014. She said:

“While the volume of new claims stabilized last year, the increase in the number of awards made by the Board is a clear indication that more respondents, typically insurers, are opting to engage with our low cost claims resolution service and recognize the real value of avoiding unnecessary and costly litigation where uncontested claims are concerned”.

Ms Byron continued: “2014 was an important year for us as we marked a decade in operation. As a result of our journey, personal injury compensation is now delivered in 7 months and at a processing cost of 6.7%, compared to almost 3 years and a cost of 58% for litigated claims. With over €1 billion in savings delivered to date and a ten year track record behind us, the benefits of non-adversarial claims resolution are unequivocal.”

Postman Awarded Compensation for Dog Attack at Work

Posted: October 24th, 2013

A postman has been awarded €55,000 compensation for a dog attack at work after a hearing at the High Court in Dublin.

Joseph Dunne (63) from Kilbeggan in County Westmeath was delivering letters to a mailbox outside of a home shared by Olive Dalton and Martin Maher in Kilbeggan when, on 8th October 2008, he was attacked by the couple´s husky-type dog.

The dog had escaped through a hole in the hedge and knocked Joseph over as he jumped up at him. Once on the floor, the dog continued to claw and bite Joseph, only leaving the postman alone when one of two passers-by hit the dog on the back with a stick.

Joseph was taken to hospital, where he was treated for severe lacerations on the right side of his face and nerve damage which affected the right side of his forehead. Joseph required 22 stitches for the cuts to his face and underwent plastic surgery to hide the worst of the scars.

Joseph was able to return to work soon after the event, but he made a claim for injury compensation for a dog attack at work against the couple who owned the dog; alleging that they were negligent in failing to fence their property appropriately and for failing to advise An Post of the dangers to delivering post to the property.

The owners – Olive Dalton and Martin Maher – denied their liability for Joseph´s injuries but, at the High Court in Dublin, Mr Justice Michael Moriarty found in Joseph´s favour and awarded him €55,000 in compensation for a dog attack at work.

Announcing his verdict, the judge commended Joseph for returning to work so soon after a particularly frightening event. The judge also heard that the dog had been put down the day after the attack.

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