The High Court has rejected a constitutional challenge to the Personal Injury Guidelines (the “Guidelines”) which were introduced in April 2021.
The PI Guidelines 2021 reduced the level of compensation that individuals are entitled to recover for a number of different injuries. The decision was welcomed by the Government, the Personal Injury Assessment Board (PIAB) and Insurance bodies at the time.
The case was taken by Bridget Delaney (the “applicant”), after she was awarded €3,000 by PIAB for an injury she sustained after a trip and fall. Before the introduction of the Personal Injury Guidelines, she would have been assessed under the Book of Quantum. Under the Book of Quantum, she likely would have recovered in the region of €18,000 to €34,0000.
The applicant challenged the legal basis of the Guidelines and maintained that PIAB had made an error in assessing the value of her injuries under the Guidelines instead of the Book of Quantum.
Justice Meenan ruled that the applicant’s constitutional rights of property, bodily integrity, and equality did not encompass a right to a particular sum of damages but, rather, a right to have her damages assessed in accordance with well-established legal principles.
About the authors: About the Author: Avril Scally is Head of Medical Negligence and Nicholas Moore is a Medical Negligence Solicitor.
More on the new Personal Injury Guidelines
14th February, 2022: Healthcare law updates in 2021
11th April, 2022: Personal Injury Guidelines sees awards for claims fall significantly
13th May, 2021: New Personal Injuries Guidelines will have significant impact on medical negligence cases
19th October, 2020: Capping of damages in personal injury cases
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