Claims Ireland

The Independent Service that Assesses Compensation Claims

Frequently Asked Questions

If I am to claim, does the incident have to have happened in Ireland?
No. You can claim if the accident happened abroad if, for example, you were on a package holiday and injured in an apartment, hotel, plane or even at the airport.

How do I know if I can make a claim?
Normally a solicitor will advise whether or not you can pursue a particular claim. Claims Ireland provide a service to arrange for a solicitor to do this for you. Claims Ireland has a panel of solicitors skilled in litigation. We will pass your details to one of these solicitors who will contact you and provide you with a free assessment of your case. Before entering the claims process, it is important to note that all claims must have three essential features:

  • Another person or organisation must have been negligent (at fault)
  • The other person or organisation must have the means to pay a sum in damages (often through their liability insurers)
  • In the Republic of Ireland, the accident must have occurred within the last two years (last three years in Northern Ireland) for those aged 18 and over. For minors, under 18 a claim can be lodged within two years from their 18th birthday (within three years in Northern Ireland).

Note: If you were to blame for the accident or there was no one else involved it will not generally be possible to claim compensation.

Am I entitled to any compensation?
If you have suffered an injury or loss (including loss of earnings) because of the actions of another person you are probably entitled to compensation.

How much might my claim be worth?
Every case is different. The amount of compensation depends on a number of factors, including the extent of your injuries, loss of income, the costs that you suffered as a result of the accident and whether you were partly to blame. Further advice regarding the amount of money you are likely to get will be available from the solicitor dealing with your claim.

How often can I expect to receive an update on my claim?
This depends on the particular solicitor handling your case. Normally though you should receive a regular updates and progress reports on your claim.

How long will it take before my case is settled?
This depends on how complicated your case is. Most cases are settled in a matter of months although some are settled in weeks. A few, very complicated, cases can take a year or more. The sooner you take action the better.

What if I was partly to blame for the accident?
If you were partly to blame for the accident which caused your injury, illness or loss, you can still claim compensation if someone else was also to blame. However, your compensation may be reduced because you were also at fault. This is called "Contributory Negligence".

What are damages?
This is another name for compensation paid to you because of your accident / injury / illness/ loss.

General Damages
These are compensation for losses which are likely to continue into the future and where it is difficult to put a final figure on the losses. Some examples of general damages are compensation for loss of promotion or other opportunities, disadvantage in the labour market, pain and suffering, inability to carry out day to day tasks / hobbies, future loss of earnings etc.

Special Damages
This is compensation for money you have had to pay out or have lost because of the accident / injury / illness, and which you can put a figure on. Examples are money spent on travel, prescription fees, buying special equipment, damage to property, insurance excess etc.

What is the Motor Insurers’ Bureau / Motor Insurers’ Bureau of Ireland?
The Motor Insurers’ Bureau (MIB) and the Motor Insurers’ Bureau of Ireland (MIBI) is an independent organisation created by the insurance industry to co-operate with the Government in compensating the victims of negligent uninsured/untraced motorists.

How is the MIB / MIBI financed?
Funds sufficient to pay claims are provided by all Motor Insurers in proportion to their market share. Those funds come from the premiums collected from insured motorists.

When should I claim on the MIB/MIBI?
As soon as it becomes clear that the motorist who has caused the injury or damage is uninsured/untraced. MIB/MIBI expects that a claimant will have made common sense enquiries to identify an insurer, which enquiries will include but not necessarily be limited to:

  • Contacting the motorist.
  • Enquiring of the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Authority as to the identity of the registered keeper of the vehicle.
  • Searching any computer database that may be available for the purpose.
  • Making a formal complaint to the police/gardai

What if the motorist cannot be identified?
If you claim is for damage to property, then unfortunately the MIB/MIBI will be unable to help you, as there is no possibility of your obtaining a judgement against the person responsible. However, if you have been injured, you will be able to submit a claim for that injury (but not damage to property), which provides for victims of ‘hit and run’ accidents.

How long will my claim take?
This is difficult to predict as many different factors are involved:

  • If your claim is limited to property damage or minor injury it should be resolved in 4 or 5 months, or less.
  • If, on the other hand, your claim involves contested liability, evidentiary difficulties, or serious injury it may require the police/garda report to be obtained, which can take some time, especially if its release is delayed by criminal prosecutions.
  • Injury claims can also be delayed if it is difficult for your doctors to agree on the effects, and you may be advised to wait until you have recovered fully, before agreeing any compensation.

Will my claim be paid in full?
Responsibility for the accident has to be agreed, or decided by a Court, on the evidence, and your claim may be reduced by a proportion, or possibly rejected if the evidence is that you were wholly or partly responsible.