Govt report recommends looking at ways to bring in cap on personal injuries awards

Govt report recommends looking at ways to bring in cap on personal injuries awards

A Government report has proposed a cap on personal injuries claims.

The Law Reform Commission is going to look at the proposals to limit what judges can award in damages.

A Department of Finance report also recommends ways to enhance transparency in the insurance industry and means to tackle fraudulent claims.

Data released to Fianna Fáil has shown personal injuries claims have cost the state €1.7bn since 2010.

Minister of State Michael D’Arcy said: "The recommendations in this report are credible and therefore achievable. However, it will require a level of open-mindedness and co-operation from all sides involved in the personal injury claims area.

"I am hopeful that the recommendations will be taken in the spirit that they are made. There is no intention to undermine the current awards system and, in particular, the rights of the plaintiff."

Mr D’Arcy said he felt that there is a need for "serious reflection" on how the personal injuries litigation system operates.

He said: "The implementation of the recommendations in this report, along with those in the motor report, will lead to greater stability in the pricing of employer liability and public liability insurance and will help prevent the volatility which we are currently seeing in the market."

    The recommendations include actions to:

  • Increase Transparency: enhance levels of transparency and improve data sharing and collection processes
  • Review the level of damages in personal injury cases: request that the Law Reform Commission undertake a detailed analysis of the possibility of developing constitutionally sound legislation to delimit or cap the amounts of damages which a court may award in respect of some or all categories of personal injuries and
  • Improve the personal injuries litigation framework: through a number of measures, namely:

    * ensuring potential defendants are notified in sufficient time that an incident has occurred in relation to which a claim is going to be made against their policy;

    * tackling fraudulent or exaggerated claims; and

    * ensuring suitable training and information supports are available to the judiciary to assist in the fair and consistent assessment and awarding of damages in personal injury cases.


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