Glass Buildings

What Level of Compensation is Appropriate for your Injury?

Note: Many Factors are taken into consideration regarding  what can be deemed an appropriate level of compensation. The level entirely depends on the circumstances of each individual case and in many cases a definitive answer to this question is not possible.

 

For example, contributory negligence may be a factor in determining appropriate compensation. A person may be partially responsible for their own injury and this could reduce the amount to which such a person would otherwise be entitled. 

Leaving such factors aside however, the Judicial Council's Personal Injury Guidelines, 2021 provide us with general guidelines as to how much compensation may be awarded in a personal injury claim and is used by the Injuries Board when they are assessing a personal injury claim.  The below guidelines show us what personal injury compensation amounts were awarded in the past and help to give an estimate as to how much compensation could be awarded based on a person’s specific injuries.

We have reproduced the Guidelines below in a user friendly way for your ease of reference.

IMPORTANT: HOW TO USE THE CALCULATOR

Awards must be proportionate to the injuries sustained and must also be proportionate when viewed in the context of awards of damages commonly made in cases involving injuries of a greater or lesser magnitude (per Denham J. in M.N. v. S.M. [2005] IESC 17 and Clarke C.J. in Morrissey v. HSE[2020] IESC 6).

1. Identify the Dominant Injury Sustained.

At the conclusion of every case the trial judge should ask each party to identify, by reference to the dominant injury sustained, the relevant damages bracket in the Guidelines which most closely matches that supported by the evidence. Brief submissions should also be made as to where, within the relevant bracket of damages, the claimant’s injuries should be located in terms of severity i.e. top, middle or bottom, having regard to the evidence, the presence or absence of other lesser injuries and all relevant considerations. Having considered the evidence in a careful and sensitive manner the trial judge should reach his or her findings of fact concerning the claimant’s injury and should then proceed to consider how, in light of those findings and the submissions made, the Guidelines should impact on the Court’s award. The obligation on the part of the trial judge to have regard to the Guidelines is mandatory as is his or her obligation, should he or she consider that the justice of the case warrants an award above the level of damages proposed for that or a similar injury in the Guidelines, to state his or her reasons for so departing. 

 

2. What if I have Multiple Injuries?

 

The assessment of general damages in cases involving multiple injuries gives rise to special difficulty given that in these Guidelines each injury is valued separately. The principal difficulty stems from the fact that there will usually be a temporal overlap in the injuries sustained such that if each injury was to be valued separately the claimant would be overcompensated to the point that the award would be unjust to the defendant and disproportionate when compared with other awards commonly made for other greater or lesser injuries. Each injury will, of course, cause additional pain and suffering which must be reflected in the award, but the question is how to ensure that the award will be just in light of the overlap of the injuries. In a case of multiple injuries, the appropriate approach for the trial judge is, where possible, to identify the injury and the bracket of damages within the Guidelines that best resembles the most significant of the claimant’s injuries. The trial judge should then value that injury and thereafter uplift the value to ensure that the claimant is fairly and justly compensated for all of the additional pain, discomfort and limitations arising from their lesser injury/injuries. It is of the utmost importance that the overall award of damages made in a case involving multiple injuries should be proportionate and just when considered in light of the severity of other injuries which attract an equivalent award under the Guidelines. 

 

3. What if my pre-existing injury is made worse by a new injury?

If a claimant has a pre-existing condition that is aggravated by an injury for which the court is assessing compensation, it should have regard only to the extent to which the condition had been made worse and the duration of any increased symptomology. 

 

4. What if my Injury is not Included Below?

 

It is conceivable that courts will encounter claims in respect of injuries which are not included in these Guidelines. This is due to the methodology adopted by the Committee which was to draw up the Guidelines based on data assembled from awards of damages made for particular types of injuries in this and other comparable jurisdictions. Where there was either no data or insufficient data in respect of a particular type of injury it was considered inadvisable to depart from the agreed methodology to propose brackets of damages for such injuries. For this reason, the Guidelines do not include many rarely encountered injuries such as the loss of an ovary, the severance of a nerve or artery or female genital mutilation, to name but a few. In any such case the structure established by the Guidelines may nonetheless provide assistance. A court when dealing with a novel or infrequent injury should seek to value the injury by reference to the damages guided for equally significant injuries in the Guidelines to ensure that the award made will be fair, just and proportionate within the scheme of damages therein provided for. Finally, all awards of damages made in respect of injuries not specifically covered by these Guidelines will bear upon the review of the Guidelines which is required to take place within three years of their adoption by the Council.

 
TO GET STARTED PLEASE CLICK THE BOX BELOW WHICH BEST DESCRIBES YOUR MOST DOMINANT INJURY

01

INJURIES RESULTING IN FORESHORTENED
LIFE EXPECTANCY

Brass Clock

 

 

 

In this jurisdiction, where a cause of action survives for the benefit of the estate of a deceased person, the damages recoverable for the benefit of that estate are not to include damages for loss or diminution of expectation of life or happiness. Accordingly, this Chapter applies only to cases where the injured party remains alive and commences a claim for those injuries including their loss of expectation of life.
 

Cases falling within this category will include those relating to undiagnosed cancers or terminal illnesses contracted through workplace negligence (e.g. asbestosis). Apart from compensation in respect of loss of life, compensation must be awarded for the pain and suffering referable to the injury itself.
 

Considerations affecting the level of the award:
(i) Age;
(ii) Reduction in normal life expectancy;
(iii) Nature, extent and duration of treatment, e.g. surgery,
chemotherapy, radiation or other medication;
(iv) Impact on work;1
(v) Interference with quality of life including social, familial and
other relationships;
(vi) Psychological sequelae including depression.


At the top of the range will be those who will experience significant
pain and suffering as a result of the injury and consequential treatment,
live with the anticipated loss of children and partner, and will have a
substantially foreshortened life expectancy. A trauma such as severe
burns with lung damage causing excruciating pain for a significant
period would attract a high award.

 

At the bottom range will be the person who has no insight into their
loss, will endure little by way of pain and suffering or where the loss of
life will be minimal.
Each case will call for a careful assessment by the court of all the
circumstances to arrive at a fair and just award.
 

Up to €550,000

Wheelchair

02

INJURIES INVOLVING PARALYSIS

a) Quadriplegia

Considerations affecting the level of the award:
(i) Age;
(ii) Life expectancy;
(iii) Extent of residual movement;
(iv) Pain;
(v) Effect on other senses;
(vi) Psychological sequelae including depression;
(vii) Effect on familial and other relationships.

€400,000-€550,000

(b) Paraplegia
Considerations affecting the level of the award:
(i) Age;
(ii) Extent of residual movement;
(iii) Pain;
(iv) Effect on other senses;
(v) Psychological sequelae including depression;
(vi) Effect on familial and other relationships;
(vii) Level of independence.

€320,000-€450,00.00

 
 

03

HEAD INJURIES

Printing Plastic Skull

(a) Most severe brain damage
In the most severe cases the claimant will be in a vegetative state;
there may be recovery of eye opening and some return of sleep
and waking rhythm and postural reflex movements; no evidence of
meaningful response to environment. Unable to obey commands;
no language functions and need for 24-hour nursing care.
Considerations affecting the level of the award will include:
(i) Age;
(ii) Life expectancy;
(iii) Insight – low or complete loss of insight or awareness will
diminish general damages;
(iv) Extent of physical limitations.

 

Up to €550,000
 

(b) Severe brain damage
Severe disability. Conscious, but total dependency and requiring
constant care. Disabilities in most cases will be cognitive and
involve marked impairment of intellect and personality, but may
also include physical disabilities, e.g. limb paralysis.
Considerations affecting the level of the award will include:
(i) Age;
(ii) Life expectancy;
(iii) Insight – low or complete loss of insight will diminish general
damages;
(iv) Extent of physical limitations;
(v) Psychological sequelae including depression;
(vi) Presence and severity of consequential epilepsy.

 

€300,000-€400,000

 

(c) Serious and moderate brain damage
(i) Moderate to severe intellectual deficit where the claimant
will not be totally dependent but will require constant care.
Disabilities may include personality change, effect on sight,
speech and senses and epilepsy or risk of epilepsy.

 

€200,000-€350,000

 

(ii) Modest to moderate intellectual deficit. Claimant will not be
totally dependent or require constant care. Will retain some
independence, the ability to work is greatly reduced if not lost,
there may be some modest physical symptoms and a risk of
epilepsy.

 

€120,000-€220,000

 

(iii) A good recovery will have been made. The claimant will be
able to participate in normal social life and return to some
form of work, but restoration of all normal function is not
implicit. There may still be persistent defects such as poor
concentration and memory or disinhibition of mood which
may interfere with lifestyle, leisure activity, relationships and
future work prospects. Cases involving one or two discrete
epileptic episodes or a temporary resurgence of epilepsy, but
there is no risk of further recurrence beyond that applicable to
the population at large, fall into this category.

 

€60,000-€140,000

 

(iv) Brain damage similar to (iii) above but where the claimant is
able to return to a level of work materially similar or the same
to that which he/she was able to carry out prior to the injury.
Considerations affecting the level of the award will include:
(i) Age;
(ii) Extent and severity of initial injury;
(iii) Duration of symptoms;
(iv) Extent and nature of treatment and/or medication;
(v) Extent of any continuing and possibly permanent disability;
(vi) Extent of any personality change;
(vii) Impact upon education and/or work;
(viii) Interference with quality of life and leisure activities;
(ix) Impact on familial and other relationships.

 

€25,000-€60,000

 

(d) Minor brain damage or head injury
In these cases, the brain damage, if any, will have been minimal.
Considerations affecting the level of the award will be:
• Severity of initial injury;
• Period taken to recover from any symptoms;
• The extent of any continuing symptoms such as headaches or
dizziness.
(i) Where a substantial recovery takes place in two to five years 

€12,000-€25,000

(ii) Where a substantial recovery takes place in one to two years 

€6,000-€12,000

(iii) Where a substantial recovery takes place in six months to one year

€3,000-€6,000

(iv) Substantial recovery within six months.   

€500-€3,000

 

(e) Established epilepsy
This includes both Grand mal and Petit mal.
Considerations affecting the level of the award will include:
(i) Age;
(ii) Existence of other associated behavioural problems;
(iii) Whether attacks are successfully controlled by medication;
(iv) Impact on education and/or work;
(v) Interference with quality of life and leisure activities;
(vi) Impact on familial and other relationships;
(vii) Extent to which quality of life may be blunted by medication.

 

Grand mal: 

€120,000-€180,000

Petit mal:

€70,000-€140,000
 

 

(f) Other epileptic conditions
Cases involving one or more epileptic episodes or a temporary
resurgence of epilepsy from which the claimant has recovered and
there is no risk of further recurrence beyond that applicable to the
population at large.
Considerations affecting the level of the award will include:
(i) Age;
(ii) Number and severity of epileptic episodes;
(iii) Period over which the episodes occurred;
(iv) Impact on education and/or work;
(v) Interference with quality of life and leisure activities.

€10,000-€37,000

 
 

04

PSYCHIATRIC DAMAGE

Image by Nik Shuliahin

 

 

It is important for judges in all courts to remember that not all damage warrants an award of compensation. In the absence of physical injury, recovery is permitted only in respect of recognisable psychiatric injury (see: Kelly v. Hennessy [1995] 3 I.R. 253).

 

For example, upset, distress, grief, disappointment and humiliation, do not attract compensation (see for example: Knowles v. Minister for Defence [2002] IEHC 39, O’Connor v. Lenihan [2005] IEHC 176, Hegarty v. Mercy University Hospital [2011] IEHC 435).

 

Grief, if experienced by a dependent, may attract an award of damages
under Part IV of the Civil Liability Act 1961.
Considerations affecting the level of the award will include:
(i) Age;
(ii) Interference with quality of life and education;
(iii) Impact on work;
(iv) Impact on interpersonal relationships;
(v) Whether medical assistance has been sought;
(vi) Nature, extent and duration of treatment undertaken and/or
medication prescribed;
(vii) Likely success of treatment;
(viii) Prognosis, to include any future vulnerability;
(ix) The extent and/or nature of any associated physical injuries.

 

A. Psychiatric damage generally
 

(a) Severe psychiatric damage
In these cases, the injured person will have marked problems with
respect to factors 4(ii) and (iii) above and the prognosis will be very
poor.


€80,000-€170,000
 

(b) Serious psychiatric damage
In these cases there will be significant problems associated with
factors 4(ii) and (iii) above but the prognosis will be more optimistic
than in 4A(a) above.

€40,000-€80,000

 

(c) Moderate psychiatric damage
While there may have been problems of the sort associated
with factors 4(ii) and (iii) above, there will have been marked
improvement by the date of the trial and the prognosis will be
good.

€15,000-€40,000

(d) Minor psychiatric damage
A full recovery will have been achieved.
Considerations affecting the level of the award should include
those listed above. In cases where only modest or no intervention
was required in terms of treatment, damages should be very much
to the lower end of the bracket.
Other considerations affecting the level of award will include:
(i) Duration of injury;
(ii) Impact of the injury on daily activities;
(iii) Extent of any treatment undertaken;
(iv) Whether sleep was affected and if so to what extent.

€500-€15,000

 

B. Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
 

Cases within this category are confined to those in which there is
a specific diagnosis of a reactive psychiatric disorder following an
event which creates psychological trauma in response to either
experiencing or witnessing a terrifying event. Symptoms may include
distressing memories of the traumatic event, nightmares, flashbacks,
sleep disturbance, avoidance, mood disorder, suicidal ideation and
hyperarousal. Symptoms of hyperarousal can affect basic functions
such as breathing, pulse rate, and bowel and/or bladder control.
(a) Severe PTSD
Such cases will involve permanent effects which prevent the
injured party from working at all or at least from functioning at
anything approaching pre-trauma level. All aspects of the life will
be badly affected.

€60,000-€120,000

(b) Serious PTSD
This category is distinct from (a) above because of a prognosis
projecting some recovery with professional help. However,
the effects are still likely to cause significant disability for the
foreseeable future.

€35,000- €80,000

(c) Moderate PTSD
In these cases, the injured person will have largely recovered, and
any continuing effects will not be grossly disabling.

€10,000-€35,000

(d) Minor PTSD
In these cases, the symptoms will have resolved within 2 years.

€500-€10,000

05

INJURIES AFFECTING THE SENSES

Touch

 

 

 

Loss of or damage to senses may be restricted to one particular sense e.g. injury to the eye or olfactory system. Sometimes more than one of the senses may be affected, and the injury sustained in the context of other injuries. In the latter case, damages should be awarded in accordance with the principles which apply to compensation for multiple injuries.
 

Considerations affecting the level of the award:
(i) Age;
(ii) Interference with quality of life and leisure activities;
(iii) Impact on work;
(iv) Effect on familial and other relationships;
(v) Impact on independence;
(vi) Cosmetic sequelae;
(vii) Psychiatric sequelae.

 

A. Injuries affecting sight
(a) Total blindness and deafness

€400,000-€500,000

(b) Total blindness

€270,000-€400,000

(c) Loss of sight in one eye/loss of one eye - with
reduced vision in the remaining eye.

€120,000-€300,000

(d) Loss of one eye/loss of sight in one eye

€80,000-€120,000

(e) Serious but incomplete loss of vision in one eye
Additional considerations affecting the level of the award will be:
(i) The extent to which the loss of vision may be rectified or
reduced by ophthalmic intervention of any sort;
(ii) The presence of blurred or double vision and sensitivity to
light.

€45,000-€70,000

(f) Minor but permanent impairment of vision in one eye
This bracket includes cases of double vision where double vision
is not constant and cases of sensitivity to bright light where
the sensitivity does not require that dark glasses be worn on a
constant basis.

€15,000-€45,000

(g) Minor eye injuries
This bracket includes all cases of minor injuries to the eye
including those sustained as a result of direct trauma from any
source, but which have recovered by date of trial. Where the injury
was no more than transient, an award at the lower end of the
bracket is warranted.

€500-€15,000

 

B. Deafness
The word “deafness” is used to embrace both total and partial hearing
loss.
In addition to those set forth at 5 above, considerations affecting the level of the award in respect of deafness will include:
(i) Whether the injury is one which had an immediate effect allowing the claimant no opportunity to adapt or whether it occurred over a period of time, as in the case of deafness caused by noise exposure;
(ii) Effect of injury on speech;
(iii) Whether the injury affects balance;
(iv) Extent to which injury can be improved by technology or treatment;
(v) Whether the injury is accompanied by tinnitus and if so the severity of that condition.

 

(a) Total deafness and loss of speech or gross impairment of speech
The lower end of the bracket is appropriate if there is no or little speech deficit or tinnitus.

€200,000-€350,000

(b) Total deafness

€150,000-€220,000

(c) Total loss of hearing in one ear
The higher end of the bracket is appropriate in the presence of tinnitus, dizziness, headaches or like sequelae.

€55,000-€80,000

(d) Partial hearing loss/tinnitus
(i) Severe tinnitus and partial hearing loss, depending upon the severity of the hearing loss,

€35,000-€55,000

(ii) Moderate tinnitus and partial hearing loss, depending upon the severity of the hearing loss.

€18,000-€35,000

(iii) Mild or occasional tinnitus with hearing loss, depending upon the severity of the hearing loss.

€500-€18,000

 

C. Impairment of taste and smell
Loss of or interference with taste and/or smell are usually associated  with brain injury or infection in which case these injuries may be dealt with within the guidelines for those injuries.
In nearly all cases of loss of smell there is some impairment of taste.
The higher end of the range will be appropriate in cases of total loss of smell with significant loss of taste.
(a) Total loss of smell and taste

€60,000-€80,000

 

(b) Significant loss of smell and taste
Damages should diminish the greater the residual sense of smell
and taste.


€40,000-€60,000

(c) Total loss of smell
This injury will normally involve some loss of taste.

€30,000-€45,000

 

(d) Partial loss of smell
Damages should diminish the greater the residual sense of smell.

€10,000-€25,000
 

(e) Total loss of taste
The higher range will be more suitable to a case of total loss of
taste with damages diminishing the greater the residual sense of
taste.

€20,000-€35,000

 

(f) Partial loss of taste

€7,500-€20,000

06

INJURIES TO INTERNAL ORGANS

Anatomical Model

 

 

 

A. Chest injuries of traumatic origin
This is an especially difficult area because the vast majority of cases
relate to industrial disease (see B below) as distinct from traumatic
injury.
Considerations affecting the level of award for traumatic injury will
include:
(i) Age;
(ii) Extent of any consequential scarring;
(iii) Nature, severity and duration of interference with lung
function;
(iv) Nature, severity and duration of physical discomfort and
residual symptomology, if any;
(v) Extent, severity and duration of all or any treatment or
medication;
(vi) Impact on work;
(vii) Interference with quality of life and leisure activities;
(viii) Long term prognosis and effect on life expectancy.

 

(a) The most serious injuries will include the total removal of one lung
and/or serious heart damage with serious prolonged pain and
suffering and permanent scarring, physical disability and reduction
in life expectancy. Where loss of life expectancy will be significant,
the injury is to be compensated in accordance with Chapter 1.

 

€150,000-€210,000

(b) Traumatic injuries to chest, lung(s) and/or heart causing permanent
damage, impairment of function, physical disability and possible
modest reduction of life expectancy.

 

€90,000-€175,000

 

(c) Damage to chest and lung(s) causing continuing disability.

€30,000-€90,000

 

(d) A relatively simple injury (such as a single penetrating wound)
causing some permanent damage to tissue but with no significant
long-term effect on lung function.

€15,000-€30,000

 

(e) Damage from smoke inhalation which is not serious enough to
interfere permanently with lung function.

Where the sequelae are more serious and/or more long-term, the
damages will fall to be assessed by reference to the damages at (c)
above.

€1,000-€15,000


(f) Injuries leading to collapsed lung from which a full and
uncomplicated recovery is made within a relatively short period.

€1,000-€15,000

 

(g) Fractures of ribs or soft tissue injuries causing serious pain and
disability of short duration.
Relevant factors will be the number
of ribs involved (on the assumption that no more than 3 ribs will
be involved), the degree and nature of the pain and discomfort.
Long-term or permanent pain will attract an award in excess of the
upper figure. At the lower end will be fractures which fully resolve
within a number of months.

€1,000-€15,000

 

B. Lung disease
The appropriate level of award for lung disease should reflect the
severity of the disease, its frequently worsening condition and/or the
risk of the development of secondary sequelae such as mesothelioma.
Particular injuries may not fit neatly within the following categories.
Nonetheless, the categories identified should provide meaningful
guidance as to the appropriate level of damages in any such case.
Considerations affecting the award may include:
(i) Age;
(ii) Level of activity and previous state of health;
(iii) Nature, severity and duration of injury and consequential
symptoms;
(iv) Extent and effects of invasive investigations, radical surgery,
chemotherapy and radiotherapy;
(v) Whether the tumour has spread and whether other organs
have become involved;
(vi) Impact on work;
(vii) Interference with quality of life and leisure activities;
(viii) Impact on familial and other relationships;
(ix) Anticipated extent of life loss and the concern for spouse
and/or children following death.

 

(a) For a young person with serious disability where there is a
probability of progressive worsening leading to premature death.
Where loss of life expectancy will be significant, the injury is to be
compensated in accordance with Chapter 1.

€150,000-€210,000

 

(b) Lung Cancer (typically in an older person) causing severe pain and
impairment both of function and of quality of life. Practitioners
may find some of the factors set out in (c) below as useful in
determining where within the bracket the injuries should be
placed.

€100,000-€175,000

 

(c) Lung disease causing emphysema, deterioration in lung function,
impairment of breathing, prolonged and/or frequent coughing,
sleep disturbance and/or restriction of physical activity.

€60,000-€120,000

 

(d) Moderate to severe asbestosis with considerable impairment of
function and quality of life. In this wide bracket, awards at the top
end will likely apply where the condition will significantly impair
mobility and quality of life, and respiratory disability will likely
exceed 50%. In the mid-range, respiratory impairment will be 30%-
50% and at the lower end 10%-30%. Where loss of life expectancy
will be significant, the injury is to be compensated in accordance
with Chapter 1.

€60,000-€120,000

 

(e) Minimal to mild asbestosis involving at most mild impairment of
function and reduction in quality of life. Respiratory impairment
will be expected to be in the range of 1%-10%.

€20,000-€60,000

 

(f) Pleural thickening with functional impairment. The award will be
at the top end where there is a significant risk of subsequent
developments adversely affecting the respiratory condition such
as further pleural thickening, asbestosis, mesothelioma and lung
cancer.

Where the extent of the respiratory disability is considered to be
within the 10%-30% range, the award should be at the lower end of
the bracket. Between 30% and 50%, the award should be in the
middle of the bracket and if above 50%, at the higher end.

€40,000-€120,000

 

(g) Pleural plaques

€500-€2,000

 

Asthma and other respiratory conditions
(h) Severe and disabling asthma causing prolonged and regular
coughing, sleep disturbance, severe impairment of physical activity
and enjoyment of life.

€60,000-€120,000

(i) Chronic asthma causing breathing difficulties and the need to use
an inhaler from time to time.

€30,000-€60,000

(j) Relatively mild asthma-like symptoms, often brought about as a
result of exposure to harmful toxins. Included in this bracket are
cases involving aggravation of a pre-existing constitutional asthma.

€12,500-€30,000


(k) Disease causing breathing difficulties (short of disabling
breathlessness) requiring fairly frequent use of an inhaler; where
there is inability to tolerate a smoky environment; or where there is
some effect on the claimant’s work and social life.

€30,000-€60,000

 

(l) Bronchitis and/or wheezing not causing serious symptoms with full
or substantial recovery; little or no serious or permanent effect on
working or social life.

€10,000-€20,000

 

(m) Mild respiratory conditions, including mild bronchitis not requiring
specialist intervention and resolving within twelve months.

€3,500-€7,500

 

C. Digestive system
It is to be noted that the risk of associated damage to the reproductive
organs is frequently encountered in cases of this nature and will require
separate consideration.
(a) Traumatic injury causing serious damage with continuing pain or
discomfort.

€45,000-€85,000

 

(b) Serious non-penetrating injury causing long-term or permanent
complications e.g. severe indigestion, aggravated by physical strain.

€20,000- €45,000

 

(c) Penetrating stab wounds or industrial laceration.

€8,000-€20,000

 

(d) Illness/damage resulting from non-traumatic injury e.g. food
poisoning.

A marked distinction should be drawn between cases having a
longstanding or permanent effect on quality of life and those in
which the only continuing symptoms may be allergy to specific
foods and the attendant risk of short-term illness.
Contributing factors may include:
• Disturbance of bowel function;
• Impact on sex life;
• Enjoyment of food.
(i) Severe toxicosis causing serious acute pain, vomiting,
diarrhoea and fever, requiring hospital admission for
some days or weeks and some continuing incontinence,
haemorrhoids and Irritable Bowel Syndrome, having a
significant ongoing impact on work and enjoyment of life.

€50,000-€100,000

 


(ii) Food poisoning causing moderate symptoms including
vomiting, discomfort, stomach cramps, alteration of bowel
function and fatigue. Symptoms severe enough to warrant
hospital admission lasting some days but with a complete
recovery within twelve months. Where hospitalisation is
required, an award should be made towards the top of the
bracket.

€6,000-€20,000

 

(iii) Varying degrees of disabling pain, cramps and diarrhoea
continuing for some days or weeks.

€500-€6,000

 

D. Reproductive system: male
These injuries include:
(a) Total loss of reproductive organs;
(b) Impotence and loss of sexual function;
(c) Infertility;
(d) Loss of testicle.
Considerations affecting the level of awards will include:
(i) Age;
(ii) Extent of scarring or other cosmetic sequelae;
(iii) Extent of any psychological sequelae including depression;
(iv) Impact on personal relationships;
(v) Whether the injury is total or partial and its effect on sexual
function;
(vi) Whether the injury is permanent;
(vii) Whether the affected man already has children and/or
whether his intended family was complete.
 

(a) Total loss of reproductive organs

€150,000-€250,000

(b) Loss of testicle
Cases of orchidectomy with some psychological sequelae but
without loss of sexual function or impotence.

€24,000-€30,000


(c) Impotence and loss of sexual function
(i) Young man with permanent total impotence, loss of sexual
function and sterility.

€135,000-€190,000

 

(ii) Total permanent impotence for middle aged man with
children.

€50,000-€100,000

 

(iii) Total permanent impotence for older man

€10,000-€50,000

 

(d) Infertility/sterility without impotence
Cases of sterility may be traumatic (caused by assault) or nontraumatic
(caused by surgery, chemicals or disease) and are often
aggravated by scarring.
(i) The most serious cases, which will invariably relate to young
men.

€100,000-€150,000

 

(ii) A less serious case perhaps involving a family man who might
have intended to have more children.

€40,000-€80,000

(iii) At the lower level of the range will be cases of an older man
with children.

€10,000-€20,000

 

(iv) Cases where the sterility amounts to little more than an
“insult”.

€5,000-€10,000

 

E. Reproductive system: female
Considerations affecting the award, apart from those specifically
identified in respect of any particular bracket, may include:
(i) Age;
(ii) Whether or not the affected woman already has children
and/or whether the intended family was complete;
(iii) Presence or absence of scarring;
(iv) Interference with sexual function;
(v) Impact on personal relationships;
(vi) Impact on menopause or hormonal function;
(vii) Whether injury may be corrected by surgery;
(viii) Extent of any psychological sequelae incl uding
depression;
(ix) Whether a foetus was aborted.

 

(a) Infertility whether by reason of injury or disease, with severe
depression and anxiety and possible pain and scarring or other
medical complications and where the claimant has no children.

€150,000-€250,000

 

(b) Infertility whether by reason of injury or disease, with severe
depression and anxiety and possible pain and scarring or other
medical complications and where the claimant has children.

€50,000-€150,000

 

(c) Infertility where the claimant would not have had children in any
event.

€8,000-€17,000

 

(d) Failed sterilisation leading to unwanted pregnancy where there is
no serious psychological impact or depression.

€17,500-€30,000

 

(e) Where delay in diagnosing ectopic pregnancy but fertility not
affected. Award dependent on extent of pain, suffering, bleeding,
whether blood transfusion required, anxiety and adjustment
disorder and whether there is resultant removal of one of the
fallopian tubes.

€5,000-€27,000

 

 

F. Kidney
Considerations affecting the level of the award, apart from those
specifically identified in respect of any particular bracket, may include:
(i) Age;
(ii) Extent of medical intervention and treatment required;
(iii) Scarring;
(iv) Impact on work;
(v) Interference with quality of life and leisure activities;
(vi) Impact on personal relationships;
(vii) Psychological sequelae including depression;
(viii) Prognosis.


(a) Serious and permanent damage to or loss of both kidneys.

€170,000-€240,000

 

(b) Serious injury resulting in a significant risk of total loss of natural
kidney function.

€80,000-€120,000

 

(c) Loss of one kidney with no damage to the other.

€36,000-€55,000

 


G. Bowel
Considerations affecting the level of the award will include:
(i) Age;
(ii) Extent of medical intervention and treatment required;
(iii) Scarring;
(iv) Impact on work;
(v) Interference with quality of life and leisure activities;
(vi) Impact on personal relationships;
(vii) Psychological sequelae including depression;
(viii) Prognosis.


(a) In cases involving double incontinence, namely loss of natural
bowel function and complete loss of urinary function and control,
together with other medical complications.

 

€150,000-€250,000

 

(b) Total loss of natural function and dependence on colostomy.

 

€115,000-€185,000

 

(c) Faecal urgency and passive incontinence persisting after surgery
and causing embarrassment and distress, typically following injury
giving birth. Only if the symptoms are severe and permanent
should the award be in the top of the bracket.

 

€55,000-€95,000

 

(d) Severe abdominal injury causing impairment of function and often
necessitating temporary colostomy (leaving disfiguring scars) and/
or impact on work and on diet.

 

€55,000-€80,000

 

(e) Other bowel injuries including penetrating injuries causing some
permanent damage but with an eventual return to natural function
and control.

 

€10,000-€25,000

 

H. Bladder
Considerations affecting the level of the award, apart from those
specifically identified in respect of any particular bracket, will include:
(i) Age;
(ii) Nature, extent and duration of all treatment and medication
required;
(iii) Impact on work;
(iv) Interference with enjoyment of life and leisure activities;
(v) Impact on personal relationships;
(vi) Psychological sequelae including depression;
(vii) Prognosis.

 

(a) Complete loss of function and control.

€115,000-€160,000

 

(b) Serious impairment of control with some pain and incontinence.

€50,000- €90,000

 

(c) Where there has been an incomplete recovery with long-term
interference with natural function.

 

€23,000-€40,000

 

I. Spleen
(a) Loss of spleen where there is continuing risk of internal infection
and disorders due to the damage to the immune system.

€28,000-€40,000

 

(b) Where the above risks are not present or are minimal.

€5,000-€12,000

 

J. Hernia
 

(a) Hernia resulting in continuing pain and/or limitations on physical
activities, sport or employment, after repair.

 

€25,000-€50,000

 

(b) Direct inguinal hernia with some risk of recurrence after repair.

€12,000-€20,000

 

(c) Uncomplicated indirect inguinal hernia with no other associated
abdominal injury or damage.

 

€4,000-€12,000

07

ORTHOPAEDIC INJURIES

Examining X-ray

 

 

 

A. Neck injuries
There is a wide range of neck injuries. Many are found in conjunction
with back and shoulder problems. Some are grossly disabling involving
significant ongoing pain and disability. Others are of modest duration
and severity in terms of pain and their impact on quality of life. It is
important that the award made be proportionate to the severity of the
injury and proportionate to the level of awards guided for other more or
less severe injuries identified in these guidelines.
The assessment of damages for whiplash injuries requires particular
care. Allegations of such injuries are easily made and not easily
disproved. Medical experts are reliant on the honesty of claimants. The
evidence relating to such a claim requires careful scrutiny.
The court should make its findings of fact on the issues of:
(i) Whether a whiplash injury was sustained; and,
(ii) If so, the nature and extent of the injury.
The court should avoid simply making a small award to avoid the
necessity of making its findings on (i) and (ii) above.
Considerations affecting the level of the award for neck injuries, apart
from those specifically identified in respect of any particular bracket,
will include:
(i) Age;
(ii) Nature, severity and duration of injury and consequential
symptoms;
(iii) Extent of required medical intervention and treatment;
(iv) Presence or risk of degenerative changes;
(v) Impact on work;
(vi) Interference with quality of life and leisure activities;
(vii) Impact on personal relationships;
(viii) Prognosis.

 

(a) Most severe neck injuries
(i) Neck injury associated with incomplete paraplegia or resulting in
permanent spastic quadriparesis or where despite the wearing of a
collar 24 hours a day for a period of years, the neck could still not
move, and severe headaches have proved intractable.

 

€150,000-€300,000
 

(ii) Injuries, usually involving serious fractures or damage to discs in
the cervical spine, which give rise to disabilities of considerable
severity, but which fall short of those arising in (i) above;
permanent damage to the brachial plexus or substantial loss of
movement in the neck combined with loss of function in one or
more limbs.

 

€100,000-€150,000
 

(b) Severe and serious neck injuries
(i) Injuries causing very severe symptoms from fractures or
dislocations that may require spinal fusion, or severe damage to
soft tissues and/or ruptured tendons leading to chronic conditions
and significant disability of a permanent nature.

 

€70,000-€100,000
 

(ii) Injuries involving less serious fractures and dislocations than at (i)
above, but which nonetheless cause severe symptoms and/or pain
which will be permanent or recurring.

 

€50,000-€70,000
 

(iii) Cases involving soft tissue or wrenching type injury and disc lesion
of the more severe type resulting in cervical spondylosis, serious
limitation of movement, permanent or recurring pain, stiffness
or discomfort and the possible need for further surgery with
increased vulnerability to trauma.

 

€35,000-€50,000
 

(c) Moderate neck injuries
Injuries which may have accelerated and/or exacerbated a preexisting
condition over a shorter period of time, usually less than
five years. This bracket will also apply to moderate soft tissue
injuries where the period of recovery has been relatively protracted
and where there remains an increased vulnerability to further
trauma or permanent minimal symptoms.

 

€12,000-€23,000
 

(d) Minor neck injuries
(i) Injuries where a substantial recovery takes place within one
to two years. This bracket will also apply to short term
acceleration and/or exacerbation of pre-existing condition,
usually between one and two years.

€6,000-€12,000


(ii) Where a substantial recovery takes place between six
months to one year. This bracket will also apply to shortterm
acceleration and/or exacerbation of pre-existing injuries,
usually less than one year.

€3,000-€6,000
 

(iii) Where a substantial recovery is made within six months.


€500-€3,000
 


B. Back injuries
Considerations affecting the level of the award for all back injuries, apart
from those specifically identified in respect of any particular bracket,
will include:
(i) Age;
(ii) Nature, severity and duration of injury and consequential
symptoms such as pain;
(iii) Extent of required medical intervention and/or treatment;
(iv) Presence or risk of degenerative changes;
(v) Impact upon work;
(vi) Interference with quality of life and leisure activities;
(vii) Effect on personal relationships;
(viii) Psychological sequelae including depression;
(ix) Prognosis.

 

(a) Most severe back injuries
 

The most severe back injuries which fall short of paralysis but
involve damage to the spinal cord and nerve roots leading to
serious consequences not normally found in cases of back injury.
There will be severe pain and disability with a combination of
incomplete paralysis and significantly impaired bladder, bowel and
sexual function.

 

€150,000-€300,000
 

(b) Severe and serious back injuries
 

(i) Cases less severe than those at (a) above but which have special
features taking them outside any lower bracket of back injury.
Such features include nerve root damage with associated loss of
sensation, impaired mobility, impaired bladder and bowel function,
impaired sexual function, depression, personality change, addiction
issues, impact on work and possible unsightly scarring.

 

€90,000-€140,000
 

(ii) Disc lesions, fractures of discs or of vertebral bodies or soft tissue
injuries leading to chronic conditions where, despite treatment
(usually involving surgery), there remain disabilities such as
continuing severe pain and discomfort, impaired agility and the risk
of arthritis.

 

€50,000-€90,000
 

(c) Moderate back injuries
 

(i) This bracket applies to a wide variety of injuries where the claimant
will have residual disability albeit of less severity than in the higher
brackets. Examples include:
• A compression/crush fracture of the lumbar vertebrae with
a substantial risk of osteoarthritis and a significant level of
ongoing pain and discomfort;
• Traumatic spondylolisthesis with continuous pain and a
probability that spinal fusion will be necessary;
• Prolapsed intervertebral disc requiring surgery;
• Damage to an intervertebral disc with nerve root irritation and
reduced mobility.

 

€35,000-€55,000
 

(ii) Injuries to the back less severe than those included in the higher
brackets. These will include injuries causing disturbance of
ligaments and muscles causing pain and discomfort, soft tissue
injuries resulting in a prolonged acceleration and/or exacerbation of
a pre-existing back condition, usually by five years or more.

 

€20,000- €35,000
 

(d) Minor back injuries
This bracket includes injuries such as sprains, strains and soft
tissue injuries which are less serious. As with minor neck injuries,
whilst the duration of symptoms will always be important, the
considerations set out at 7.B. above will guide whether the award
should be in the higher or lower category.


(i) Where a substantial recovery without surgery takes place
within two to five years.

 

€12,000-€20,000
 

(ii) Where a substantial recovery or a recovery to nuisance level
takes place without surgery within one to two years. This
bracket will also apply to short term acceleration and/or
exacerbation injuries lasting between one and two years.

 

€6,000-€12,000
 

(iii) Where a substantial recovery takes place without surgery
between six months and one year. This bracket will also
apply to short-term acceleration and/or exacerbation injuries,
lasting between six months and one year.

 

€3,000-€6,000
 

(iv) Where a substantial recovery is made within six months.

 

€500-€3,000
 

 


C. Pelvis and hips
Considerations affecting the level of the award for all pelvic and hip
injuries, apart from those specifically identified in respect of any
particular bracket, will include:
(i) Age;
(ii) Nature, severity and duration of injury and consequential
symptoms;
(iii) Extent of required medical intervention and treatment;
(iv) Presence or risk of degenerative changes;
(v) Impact upon working capacity;
(vi) Effect on enjoyment of life, leisure activities and inter personal
relationships;
(vii) Presence of pre-existing degenerative changes;
(viii) Psychological sequelae including depression;
(ix) Prognosis.

 

(a) Severe pelvis and hip injuries
Extensive fractures of the pelvis involving, for example, dislocation
of a low back joint and a ruptured bladder or a hip injury
resulting in spondylolisthesis of a low back joint with significant
pain necessitating spinal fusion and other substantial residual
disabilities.

 

€100,000-€165,000
 

(b) Serious pelvis and hip injuries
(i) The injuries less severe than at (a) above but with particular
distinguishing features lifting them above any lower bracket.

 

€75,000-€100,000
 

(ii) Injury to the hip or pelvis less complicated than those in (a) or (b)
(i) above. Examples include:
• fracture to the acetabulum leading to degenerative changes
and leg instability requiring an osteotomy and likelihood of
future hip replacement;
• fracture of an arthritic femur or hip necessitating hip
replacement;
• fracture resulting in a hip replacement which is only partly
successful so there is a clear risk of needing future revision
surgery.

 

€50,000-€75,000
 

(c) Moderate pelvis and hip injuries
Significant injury to the pelvis or hip but permanent disability is not
major and any future risk not great.

 

(i) These cases may involve hip replacement or other surgery.
Where recovery has not been wholly successful the award
will tend to the top of the bracket. Also included will be cases
where hip replacement may be necessary in the foreseeable
future or where there are more than minimal ongoing
symptoms.

€30,000-€65,000
 

(ii) Injuries to the pelvis interfering with natural childbirth and
requiring Caesarean Section. Where the claimant has not had
any children at the time of the injury, an award towards the
top end of the bracket should be made.

 

€30,000-€45,000
 

(d) Minor pelvis and hip injuries
(i) Where a substantial recovery takes place within two to five
years.

€12,000-€20,000
 

(ii) Where a substantial recovery takes place within one to two
years.

€6,000-€12,000
 

(iii) Where a substantial recovery takes place between six months
and one year.

€3,000-€6,000
 

(iv) Where a substantial recovery is made within six months.
 

€500-€3,000
 

D. Shoulder injuries
Considerations affecting the level of the award for shoulder injuries,
apart from those specifically identified in respect of any particular
bracket, will include:
(i) Age;
(ii) Nature, severity and duration of injury and consequential
symptoms;
(iii) Whether the injury is to the shoulder of the dominant upper
limb;
(iv) Presence or risk of degenerative changes;
(v) Extent of required medical intervention and treatment;
(vi) Impact upon work;
(vii) Interference with quality of life and leisure activities;
(viii) Impact on personal relationships;
(ix) Prognosis.

 

(a) Severe shoulder injuries
The most severe shoulder injuries, such as those involving damage
to the brachial plexus nerves and which may result in paralysis of
the arm, lack of muscle control in the arm, hand or wrist or other
symptoms causing significant disability.

 

€100,000-€150,000
 

(b) Serious shoulder injuries
Injuries in this bracket will include:

 

(i) Dislocation of the shoulder and damage to the lower part of
the brachial plexus causing pain in shoulder and neck, aching
elbow, sensory symptoms in the forearm and hand and
weakness of grip;
(ii) Fractured humerus leading to permanently restricted
shoulder movement;
(iii) Rotator cuff injury with persisting symptoms notwithstanding
surgery.

 

€40,000-€75,000
 

(c) Moderate shoulder injuries
Frozen shoulder with limitation of movement and discomfort with
symptoms persisting for some years and other soft tissue injuries
where intrusive symptoms will be permanent.

 

€18,000-€35,000
 

(d) Minor shoulder injuries
Examples of cases within this bracket will include soft tissue injury
to the shoulder causing considerable pain but where there has
been an almost complete recovery and a simple fracture of the
clavicle with good recovery.
(i) Where a substantial recovery takes place within two years.

€6,000-€12,000
 

(ii) Where a substantial recovery takes place within one year.

€3,000-€6,000
 

(iii) Where a substantial recovery takes place within six months.

€500-€3,000
 

 

E. Amputation of arm
Considerations which will affect the level of the award in respect of
amputation and other severe arm injuries will include:
(i) Age;
(ii) Extent and intensity of any ongoing pain;
(iii) Level of the amputation, if required;
(iv) Whether amputation, if required, is to the dominant arm;
(v) The extent to which prosthetics, if applicable, can restore
function;
(vi) Extent, nature and duration of all treatment required e.g.
surgery, physiotherapy and medication;
(vii) Cosmetic impact;
(viii) Impact on work;
(ix) Interference with quality of life and leisure activities;
(x) Impact on independence and ability to self-care;
(xi) Psychological sequelae including depression.

 

(a) Loss of both arms

€300,000-€475,000
 

(b) Loss of one arm
(i) Loss of arm amputated at shoulder.

€140,000-€230,000
 

(ii) Above elbow amputation.

€120,000-€175,000
 

(iii) Below elbow amputation.

€100,000-€150,000
 

F. Other arm injuries
 

(a) Other arm injuries (severe)
(i) Injuries which fall short of amputation, but which are extremely
serious and leave the injured person with little or no use of the
arm.

 

€100,000-€150,000
 

(ii) Injuries resulting in permanent and substantial disablement.
Serious fractures of one or both forearms where there is significant
permanent residual disability whether functional or cosmetic.

 

€50,000-€100,000
 

(b) Other arm injuries (moderate)
While there will have been significant disabilities, a substantial
degree of recovery will have taken place or is anticipated.

 

€20,000-€50,000


(c) Other arm injuries (minor)
Included in this bracket will be straightforward fractures without
the risk of arthritis and where the injury will have no long-term
sequelae. At the upper end of the bracket will be cases where
recovery was delayed and there may have been a requirement for
significant treatment.

 

€5,000-€20,000
 

 

G. Injuries to the elbow
Considerations affecting the level of awards will include:
(i) Age;
(ii) Whether the elbow is on the dominant arm;
(iii) Extent and duration of pain and suffering;
(iv) Extent, nature and duration of all treatment required e.g.
surgery, physiotherapy and medication;
(v) Cosmetic impact, where relevant;
(vi) Presence or risk of degenerative changes;
(vii) Impact on work;
(viii) Interference with quality of life and leisure activities;
(ix) Impact on independence and ability to self-care;
(x) Psychological sequelae including depression.

 

(a) Serious elbow injuries
Injuries falling within this category will have permanent
consequences in terms of function and pain. Examples will
include:
• A serious fracture with secondary arthritis;
• A crush injury with permanent impairment of function;
• Nerve palsy from which there will be only partial recovery.

 

€40,000-€72,500
 

(b) Moderate elbow injuries
Injuries less severe than those at (a) above which cause
impairment of function, but which do not involve major surgery or
significant disability. Examples would include:
• A fracture from which the injured person has made a
reasonable recovery, which required open reduction and
fixation;
• Nerve palsy from which a good recovery has been made.

 

€17,000-€40,000
 

(c) Minor elbow injuries
Most elbow injuries will fall into this category. They will be
injuries which cause no permanent damage and do not result in
permanent loss of function. Examples would include:
• A simple fracture with uncomplicated recovery;
• A soft tissue injury with pain;
• Modest tennis elbow syndrome;
• Relatively minor lacerations.

 

€1,000-€15,000
 

H. Wrist injuries
Considerations affecting the level of the award are the same as those
which apply to elbow injuries above.

 

(a) Severe wrist injuries
Severely disabling wrist injury resulting in complete loss of function
in the wrist such as where an arthrodesis has been performed.
Deformity may increase the award depending on severity.

 

€60,000-€80,000
 

(b) Serious wrist injuries
Injuries less severe than those at (a) above resulting in significant
permanent disability but where some useful movement remains.

 

€40,000-€60,000
 

(c) Moderate wrist injuries
Injuries less severe than at (b) above but where there is some
permanent disability, such as a degree of persisting pain and/or
stiffness.

 

€20,000-€40,000
 

(d) Minor wrist injuries
Injuries which cause no permanent damage and do not result in
permanent loss of function such as a Colles’ Fracture, undisplaced
or minimally displaced fractures necessitating the application of
plaster of Paris or bandages.

 

(i) Where a substantial recovery or a recovery to nuisance level
takes place without surgery within two to five years. This
bracket will also apply to shorter term acceleration and/or
exacerbation injuries usually between two and five years.

€10,000-€18,000
 

(ii) Where a substantial recovery takes place without surgery
between six months and two years. This bracket will also
apply to short-term acceleration and/or exacerbation injuries
lasting between six months and two years.

€3,000-€10,000
 

(iii) Where a substantial recovery is made within six months.

€500-€3,000
 


I. Hand injuries and injuries to thumb and fingers
The hand is functionally and cosmetically the most important feature of
the arm. Accordingly, the loss of a hand is valued close to the amount
which would be awarded for loss of an arm. The upper end of any
bracket will generally be appropriate where the material injury is to the
dominant hand.
In cases of injuries to multiple fingers, practitioners and judges should
not simply add the figures which would be appropriate for each
injury separately assessed but should consider the overall extent
of pain, suffering, loss of amenity, and consequential disfigurement
usually leading to a lower award than would be the case if considered
separately.

 

Hand injuries
 

(a) Total or effective loss of both hands
The top of the bracket is applicable where no effective prosthesis
can be used.

 

€200,000-€350,000
 

(b) Serious damage to both hands giving rise to
permanent disability and significant loss of function

 

€120,000-€180,000
 

(c) Total or effective loss of one hand
This bracket will apply to a hand that was crushed and thereafter
surgically amputated or where all fingers and most of the palm
have been traumatically amputated. The upper end of the bracket
is indicated where the hand so damaged was the dominant one.

 

€100,000-€150,000
 

(d) Serious hand injuries
This bracket will apply to injuries where the capacity of the hand
has been severely reduced. Included would be cases where several
fingers have been amputated but reattached leaving the hand
clawed, clumsy and unsightly or where some fingers and perhaps
part of the palm amputated resulting in gross diminution of grip
and dexterity with cosmetic disfigurement.

 

€50,000-€100,000
 

(e) Severe fractures to fingers
The bracket will include injury resulting in partial amputations,
resulting deformity, impairment of grip, reduced mechanical
function, disturbed sensation and cosmetic disfigurement. The top
of the range would be appropriate where there is loss of sensation,
scarring, permanent disability and surgery has failed.

 

€20,000-€50,000
 

(f) Less serious hand injury
Included are cases of severe crush injury resulting in significantly
impaired function not requiring future surgery or despite operative
treatment undergone.

 

€17,000-€40,000
 

(g) Moderate hand injury
This broad category will include crush injuries, penetrating wounds,
soft tissue type injuries and deep lacerations. The top of the range
would be appropriate where there is loss of sensation and scarring.

 

€10,000-€25,000
 

Thumb injuries
 

(h) Total or partial loss of thumb
Very serious injury to thumb. This bracket would include cases
where the thumb has been reattached following trauma leaving a
virtually useless and deformed digit or where the thumb has been
amputated through the interphalangeal joint.

 

€40,000-€67,500
 

(i) Serious injury to thumb
Such injuries may involve nerve damage or fracture necessitating
the insertion of wires as a result of which the thumb feels cold, is
cold and ultrasensitive and there is significantly impaired grip or
loss of manual dexterity.

 

€20,000-€40,000
 

(j) Moderate injuries to the thumb
These are injuries that necessitate arthrodesis of the
interphalangeal joint or cause damage to tendons or nerves. Such
injuries result in some impairment of sensation and function and
cosmetic deformity.

 

€15,000-€25,000
 

(k) Minor hand, finger and thumb injuries
This bracket will include fractures and injuries causing minor
scarring, or those resulting in tenderness or sensitivity to cold
where otherwise there is full recovery.

 

€1,000-€12,000
 

Injuries to fingers
 

(l) Total loss of index finger

 

€25,000-€35,000
 

(m) Partial loss of index finger
This bracket also covers cases of injury to the finger giving rise to
disfigurement and impairment of grip or dexterity.

 

€15,000-€25,000

 

(n) Other injury or fracture of index finger
This bracket is appropriate where the fracture has mended quickly
but grip has remained impaired, there is pain on heavy use and
osteoarthritis is likely.

 

€500-€15,000
 

(o) Total loss of middle finger

€20,000-€30,000
 

(p) Partial loss of middle finger
This bracket also covers cases of injury to the finger giving rise to
disfigurement and impairment of grip or dexterity.

 

€12,000-€20,000
 

(q) Other injury or fracture of middle finger
This bracket is appropriate where the fracture has mended quickly
but grip has remained impaired, there is pain on heavy use and
osteoarthritis is likely.

 

€500-€12,000
 

(r) Total loss of ring finger

 

€17,500-€27,500
 

(s) Partial loss of ring finger
This bracket also covers cases of injury to the finger giving rise to
disfigurement and impairment of grip or dexterity.

 

€10,000-€17,500
 

(t) Other injury or fracture of ring finger
This bracket is appropriate where the fracture has mended quickly
but grip has remained impaired, there is pain on heavy use and
osteoarthritis is likely.

 

€500-€10,000
 

(u) Total loss of little finger

 

€12,000-€25,000
 

(v) Partial loss of little finger
This bracket also covers cases of injury to the finger giving rise to
disfigurement and impairment of grip or dexterity.

 

€7,500-€12,000
 

(w) Other injury or fracture of little finger
This bracket is appropriate where the fracture has mended quickly
but grip has remained impaired, there is pain on heavy use and
osteoarthritis is likely.

 

€500-€7,500

 

J. Vibration White Finger (VWF) and/or Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS)
Vibration White Finger and/or Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome,
caused by exposure to vibration, is a slowly progressive condition,
the development and severity of which are affected by the degree
of exposure, in particular the magnitude, frequency, duration and
transmission of vibration. The symptoms are similar to those
experienced in the constitutional condition of Raynaud’s phenomenon.
The level of the award will depend on the following factors:
(i) Age and onset;
(ii) Whether one or both hands are affected and, if only one,
whether it is the dominant hand;
(iii) Number of fingers affected;
(iv) Extent of impaired dexterity and/or reduction in grip strength;
(v) Frequency and duration of painful episodes;
(vi) Overall impact of symptoms on work, domestic and social life.
In a severe case, the injury may be regarded as damaging a hand rather
than being confined to the fingers.

 

(a) Severe
Persisting bilateral symptoms which interfere significantly with
daily life.

 

€25,000-€45,000
 

(b) Serious
Persisting symptoms in one hand which interferes significantly with
daily life.

 

€20,000-€30,000
 

(c) Moderate
Cases where symptoms are ongoing but intermittent or occur
mostly in cold weather.

 

€8,000-€20,000
 

(d) Minor
Occasional symptoms in only a few fingers.

 

€1,000-€5,000

 

K. Other upper limb disorders
This section covers a range of pathological injuries of the upper limbs
including:
(a) Tensynovitis;
(b) De Qunverain’s Tensynovitis;
(c) Tenovaginitis Stenovans;
(d) Carpel Tunnel Syndrome;
(e) Epicondylitis.
Considerations affecting the level of the award will include:
(i) Age;
(ii) Whether the condition is bilateral or one sided;
(iii) Severity and duration of pain and other symptoms such as
swelling tenderness and inflammation;
(iv) Nature, extent and duration of treatment undertaken;
(v) Interference with quality of life and leisure activities;
(vi) Impact on work;
(vii) Ability to avoid recurrence of symptoms;
(viii) Prognosis.
The following brackets apply to each of the above injuries based on
these considerations:

 

(a) Continuing disability with surgery

€20,000-€40,000


 

(b) Continuing symptoms but fluctuating

 

€12,000-€20,000


 

(c) Symptoms resolving within a period of two years

 

€6,000-€12,000


 

(d) Complete recovery within a period of one year

 

€500-€6,000

 

L. Leg amputation
Considerations which will affect the level of the award in respect of
amputation will include:
(i) Age;
(ii) Whether the amputation is above or below the knee;
(iii) The extent to which prosthetics can restore function;
(iv) The extent and intensity of any ongoing pain including
phantom pain;
(v) Impact on independence;
(vi) Existence of any side effects resultant upon amputation such
as backache and/or the risk of future degenerative changes in
the hips and spine;
(vii) Interference with quality of life and leisure activities;
(viii) Impact on social and domestic life;
(ix) Effect on relationships;
(x) Impact on work;
(xi) Psychological sequelae including depression.

 

(a) Loss of both legs

€280,000-€400,000
 

(b) Below knee amputation of both legs or feet

€200,000-€300,000
 

(c) Above knee amputation of one leg

€120,000-€160,000
 

(d) Below knee amputation of one leg or amputation of
one foot

 

€100,000-€140,000

 

M. Other leg injuries
Considerations affecting the level of the award may include the
following:
(i) Age;
(ii) Scarring;
(iii) Nature, severity and duration of pain;
(iv) Nature, extent and duration of all treatment required e.g.
surgery, physiotherapy, medication;
(v) Presence or risk of degenerative changes;
(vi) Limitation of movement or instability in relevant joint;
(vii) Interference with quality of life and leisure activities;
(viii) Impact on social and domestic life;
(ix) Impact on work;
(x) Extent of scarring;
(xi) Psychological sequelae;
(xii) Prognosis.

 

(a) Most severe leg injuries not involving amputation
Some injuries, although not involving amputation are so severe
that the courts have awarded damages at a similar level. Such
injuries would include extensive de-gloving of the leg, where there
is gross shortening of the leg, or where fractures have not united
and extensive bone grafting has been undertaken.

 

€100,000-€160,000
 

(b) Severe leg injuries
Injuries leading to permanent problems with mobility, the need
for crutches or mobility aids for the remainder of claimant’s life.
Injuries where multiple fractures have taken years to heal, required
extensive treatment and have led to serious deformity and
limitation of movement, or where arthritis has developed in a joint
so that further surgical treatment is likely.

 

€90,000-€130,000
 

(c) Serious leg injuries
 

Serious compound or comminuted fractures or injuries to joints
or ligaments resulting in instability, prolonged treatment, a lengthy
period of non-weight bearing, the near certainty that arthritis will
ensue, extensive scarring. To justify an award within this bracket
a combination of such features will generally be necessary. There
will usually be a gross restriction of walking capacity. Also included
will be injuries requiring hip replacement by reason of ongoing or
anticipated deterioration.

 

€75,000-€100,000
 

(d) Moderate leg injuries
Cases in this bracket will include complicated or multiple fractures
or severe crush injuries, generally to a single limb.

 

€50,000-€75,000
 

(e) Leg injuries (less serious that in (d) above)
Fractures from which an incomplete recovery is made or serious
soft tissue injuries. In the case of fractures, the injured person will
have made a reasonable recovery but may be left with a metal
implant and/or a limp, impaired mobility, sensory loss, discomfort.
This bracket will also apply to cases involving serious soft tissue
injuries to one or both legs causing significant cosmetic deficit,
function on restriction and/or some nerve damage in the lower
limbs.

 

€25,000-€50,000
 

(f) Minor leg injuries
 

(i) Simple fracture of a femur with no damage to articular
surfaces.

€12,000-€20,000
 

(ii) Simple fractures to tibia or fibula or soft tissue injuries.
Towards the top of the bracket will come simple fractures
where there is ongoing minor symptomology and/or restriction
of movement. At the bottom will be cases of simple fracture
with a complete recovery.

€7,500-€15,000
 

(iii) Wide variety of soft tissue injuries, lacerations, cuts, bruising
or contusions all of which have recovered completely or
almost completely, with any residual disability including
cosmetic disability being of a minor nature.

€3,000-€7,500
 

(iv) Where the injuries are the same as at (iii) above and all
symptoms have resolved within six months.

€500-€3,000

 

N. Knee injuries
Considerations affecting the level of the award include those identified
in respect of “Other leg injuries” at M above.

 

(a) Severe knee injury
(i) Cases where there has been disruption of the joint, the
development of osteoarthritis, gross ligamentus damage,
lengthy treatment, considerable pain and loss of function, and
an arthroplasty or arthrodesis has taken place or is inevitable.

 

€75,000-€110,000
 

(ii) Leg fracture extending into the knee joint causing pain which
is constant, permanent, limiting movement or impairing agility,
and rendering the injured person prone to osteoarthritis and
the risk of arthrodesis or arthroplasty.

 

€55,000-€75,000
 

(iii) Less severe knee injuries. These cases will include those
falling within the higher brackets but where the injury has
resulted in less severe disability. There may be continuing
symptoms by way of pain or discomfort and limitation
of movement or instability or deformity with the risk of
degenerative changes and the need for remedial surgery in the
long term as a result of damage to the kneecap, ligamentus or
meniscal injury, or muscular wasting.

 

€35,000-€55,000
 

(b) Moderate knee injuries
Injuries involving dislocation, torn cartilage or meniscus which results
in minor instability, wasting, weakness or other mild future disability.
This bracket also includes injuries which accelerate symptoms from a
pre-existing condition over a prolonged period of years.

 

€15,000-€35,000
 

(c) Minor knee injuries
This bracket includes injuries similar to those in the immediately
preceding bracket but where the injury is less serious and involves
shorter periods of acceleration or exacerbation and also includes
injuries such as lacerations, twisting or bruising injuries.

 

(i) Where a substantial recovery or a recovery to nuisance level
takes place within one to two years. This bracket will also
apply to shorter term acceleration and/or exacerbation injuries
lasting between one and two years.

€6,000-€12,000
 

(ii) Where a substantial recovery takes place without surgery
between six months and one year. This bracket will also apply
to shorter term acceleration and/or exacerbation injuries
lasting between six months and one year.

€3,000-€6,000
 

(iii) Where a substantial recovery takes place within six months.

€500-€3,000
 

O. Ankle injuries
Considerations affecting the level of awards may include:
(i) Age;
(ii) Severity and duration of pain;
(iii) Nature and extent of all treatment, e.g. surgery, physiotherapy
and medication;
(iv) Scarring;
(v) Presence or risk of degenerative changes;
(vi) Instability in joint or limitation of movement;
(vii) Effect on enjoyment of life, sport and leisure activities;
(viii) Impact on work;
(ix) Prognosis.

 

(a) Severe ankle injuries
Examples of injuries falling within this bracket will be limited and
unusual. Included will be cases of transmalleolar fracture of the
ankle with extensive soft tissue damage resulting in deformity and
risk that any future injury to the leg might necessitate a below
knee amputation. Included also will be cases such as ankle
fractures causing degeneration to the extent that arthrodesis will
be necessary.

 

€70,000-€100,000
 

(b) Serious ankle injuries
Injuries necessitating an extensive period of treatment or where
pins and plates have been inserted and there is significant residual
disability in the form of ankle instability and severely limited ability
to walk.

 

€45,000-€70,000
 

(c) Moderate ankle injuries
Fractures, ligamentus tears and the like which give rise to less
serious disabilities such as difficulty in walking on uneven ground,
difficulty standing or walking for long periods of time, difficulty in
negotiating stairs, irritation from metal plates and residual scarring.
There may also be a risk of future osteoarthritis.

 

€20,000-€45,000

 

(d) Minor ankle injuries
Less serious, minor or undisplaced fractures, sprains and
ligamentus injuries.

 

(i) Where a substantial recovery or a recovery to nuisance level
takes place without surgery within two to five years. This
bracket will also apply to shorter term acceleration and/or
exacerbation injuries usually between two and five years.

€12,000-€20,000
 

(ii) Where a substantial recovery takes place without surgery
between six months and two years. This bracket will also
apply to very short-term acceleration and/or exacerbation
injuries, usually less than two years.

€6,000-€12,000
 

(iii) Where a substantial recovery is made within six months.

€500-€3,000
 

P. Achilles tendon
 

(a) Severe
Severance of the tendon and the peroneus longus muscle
giving rise to cramp, swelling and restricted ankle movement
necessitating the cessation of active sport.

 

€40,000-€55,000
 

(b) Serious
Where complete division of the tendon has been successfully
repaired but there is residual weakness, a limitation of ankle
movements, a limp and residual scarring and where further
improvement is unlikely.

 

€25,000-€40,000
 

(c) Moderate
Cases involving partial rupture or significant injury to the tendon.
Significant recovery will have been made but there may be ongoing
low-grade symptoms and functional disability.

 

€18,000-€25,000
 

(d) Minor
A turning of the ankle resulting in some damage to the tendon and
a feeling of being unsure of ankle support.

€6,000-€12,000
 

(i) Where substantial recovery takes place in one to two years.
(ii) Where substantial recovery takes place in six months to one
year.

€3,000-€6,000
 

(iii) Where substantial recovery takes place within six months.

€500-€3,000
 

Foot amputation
To be treated as below knee amputation.

 

Q. Other foot injuries
Considerations affecting the level of the award may include:
(i) Age;
(ii) The nature, severity and duration of pain;
(iii) Extent of treatment required, e.g. surgery, physiotherapy and
medication;
(iv) Presence or risk of arthritis or limitation of movement;
(v) Interference with enjoyment of life, sport and leisure activities,
social and domestic life;
(vi) Impact on work;
(vii) Extent of scarring;
(viii) Psychological sequelae including depression;
(ix) Prognosis.

 

(a) Most severe foot injuries
To fall within this bracket the injury must produce permanent and
severe pain or very serious permanent disability. Examples would
include traumatic amputation of the forefoot with the risk of the
need for a full amputation and serious consequential back pain, or
cases involving loss of a substantial portion of the heel such that
mobility is grossly restricted. This level is also suitable for unusually
severe injuries to a single foot resulting for example in heel fusion,
osteoporosis, ulceration or other disability preventing the wearing
of ordinary shoes.

 

€90,000-€150,000
 

(b) Severe foot injuries
Falling within this bracket will be injuries resulting in substantial
restriction on mobility or considerable and permanent pain.
Examples include less severe versions of those at (a) above as well
as those which result in severe degloving and/or extensive surgery
with continued pain and in the presence of arthritis. Also in this
category will be the case of the drop foot deformity corrected by a
brace.

 

€80,000-€130,000
 

(c) Serious foot injuries
This bracket will include injuries less severe than in (b) above but
which result in continuing pain. Examples would include severe
burning to both feet with resultant surgery and significant scarring
and traumatic injuries resulting in future arthritis, prolonged
treatment and the risk of fusion.

 

€38,000-€75,000

 

(d) Moderate foot injuries
This bracket will include displaced metatarsal fractures resulting in
permanent deformity and continuing symptoms. There may be a
risk of long-term osteoarthritis and/or future surgery.

 

€20,000-€45,000
 

(e) Minor foot injuries
This category will apply to relatively modest injuries such as simple
metatarsal fractures, ruptured ligaments, puncture wounds and
the like.
(i) Where a substantial recovery or a recovery to nuisance level
takes place without surgery within two to five years. This
bracket will also apply to shorter term acceleration and/or
exacerbation injuries usually between two and five years.

€12,000-€20,000
 

(ii) Where a substantial recovery takes place without surgery
between one and two years. This bracket will also apply to
very short-term acceleration and/or exacerbation injuries,
usually less than two years.

€6,000-€12,000
 

(iii) Where a substantial recovery takes place without surgery
between six months and one year. This bracket will also apply
to very short-term acceleration and/or exacerbation injuries
for six months to one year.

€3,000- €6,000
 

(iv) Where a substantial recovery is made within six months.

€500-€3,000
 

R. Toe injuries
Considerations affecting the level of the award:
(i) Age;
(ii) Impact on overall function of the foot;
(iii) In the case of amputation, the number of toes removed;
(iv) Nature, extent and duration of treatment e.g. surgery,
physiotherapy and medication;
(v) The nature and severity of ongoing pain, including phantom
pain;
(vi) Presence or risk of osteoarthritis or restriction of movement;
(vii) Impact on capacity for work;
(viii) Effect on enjoyment of life, sport and leisure activities;
(ix) Impact on mobility and balance;
(x) Prognosis.

 

(a) Amputation of all toes on one foot

€50,000-€75,000
 

(b) Amputation of big toe

€28,000-€45,000
 

(c) Other toe injuries (severe)
This bracket is appropriate for severe crush or other traumatic
injury falling short of the need for amputation but resulting in
significant continuing and permanent symptoms.

 

€25,000-€40,000
 

(d) Other toe injuries (serious)
This bracket will include serious injuries to the big toe or crush
and multiple fractures of two or more toes. There will be moderate
permanent disability or moderate ongoing discomfort, pain and
sensitivity.

 

€15,000-€25,000
 

e) Other toe injuries (moderate)
Relatively straightforward fractures/crush injuries or the
exacerbation of a pre-existing degenerative condition or laceration
injuries to one or more toes. Cases involving prolonged symptoms
or surgery should be located at the top of the bracket and those
with complete resolution towards the bottom.

 

€8,000-€15,000
 

(f) Other toe injuries (minor)
(i) For straightforward injuries recovered within 12 months to 24
months.

 

€7,000-€10,000
 

(ii) For straightforward injuries substantially recovered within 12
months.

 

€500-€7,000

08

CHRONIC PAIN

Joint Pain

 

This chapter deals with a variety of what may loosely be described as
‘pain disorders”. These include, but are not limited to, Fibromyalgia,
Chronic Pain Syndrome, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME), Conversion
Disorders (also known as Dissociative Disorders), and Somatic
Symptom Disorders. Cases of short-lived pain disorders, short-term
exacerbation of an existing pain disorder, or brief acceleration of the
onset of a pain disorder, all fall outside the suggested brackets and will
require separate consideration.
With the exception of cases of Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (also
known as CRPS), no attempt has been made to subdivide between
different clinical conditions. Guidance instead reflects the impact,
severity and prognosis of the condition. Where the condition principally
affects a single part of the anatomy, cross-reference to the relevant
chapter within these guidelines may assist. The presence of an
overlapping psychiatric injury is common case in such cases.
Considerations affecting the level of the award will include:
(i) Age;
(ii) Degree of pain experienced;
(iii) Whether the condition is limited to one anatomical site or is
widespread;
(iv) Nature, extent and duration of all treatment including, in
particular, medication required to control symptoms of pain;
(v) Overall impact of symptoms (which may include fatigue,
associated impairments of cognitive function, muscle
weakness, headaches and other fluctuating symptoms) on:
(a) Mobility;
(b) Ability to function in daily life;
(c) Independence;
(d) Work;
(e) Relationships.
(vi) The presence of any separately identifiable psychiatric
disorder and its impact on the perception of pain;
(vii) Prognosis.
52

 

A. Complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS)
This condition is characterised by intense burning pain which can make
moving or even touching the affected limb intolerable.

 

(a) CRPS (Severe)
In such cases the prognosis will be poor; ability to work will be
greatly reduced if not completely eliminated; significant care/
domestic assistance will be needed; coexisting psychological
problems may be present. At the top end of the scale, symptoms
may have spread to other limbs.

 

€65,000-€95,000
 

(b) CRPS (Moderate)
The top end of this bracket will include cases where significant
effects have been experienced for a prolonged period but
prognosis assumes some future improvement enabling a return to
work in a significant (not necessarily full time) capacity and with
only modest future care requirements. At the lower end will be
cases where symptoms have persisted for some years but are
more variable in intensity, where medication is effective in limiting
symptoms, and/or where the prognosis is markedly better, though
not necessarily for complete resolution. The injured party may
have already resumed employment. Minimal, if any, future care
will be required.

 

€35,000-€65,000
 

B. Other pain disorders
 

(a) Severe
In these cases, significant symptoms will be ongoing despite
treatment and will be expected to persist, resulting in adverse
impact on ability to work and the need for some care/assistance.
Most cases of fibromyalgia with serious persisting symptoms will
fall within this range.

 

€50,000-€75,000
 

(b) Moderate
At the top end of this bracket will be cases where symptoms are
ongoing, albeit of lesser degree than in (a) above and the impact on
ability to work/function in daily life is less marked. At the bottom
end will be cases where full, or near complete recovery has been
made (or is anticipated) after symptoms have persisted for a
number of years. Cases involving significant symptoms but where
the claimant was vulnerable to the development of a pain disorder
within a few years (or “acceleration” cases) will also fall within this
bracket.

 

€30,000-€50,000
 

09

FACIAL INJURIES

Face Sculpture

 

The assessment of damages for facial injuries is an extremely difficult
task particularly in cases involving cosmetic defect or other types of
disfigurement.
 

A. Facial disfigurement
Burns are not dealt with separately and the award made should reflect
the severity of the circumstances surrounding the injury and the
suffering endured during the period of initial treatment. The very worst
burns lead not only to considerable disfigurement and pain but to a
variety of continuing physical and psychological injuries meriting very
high awards, usually at the upper ends of the brackets or above them
altogether.
Considerations affecting the level of the award will include:
(i) Age;
(ii) Nature of the underlying injury which has resulted in facial
disfigurement;
(iii) Nature, extent and duration of treatment;
(iv) Nature and extent of residual scarring or disfigurement;
(v) Impact on work;
(vi) Interference with quality of life and social and leisure
activities;
(vii) Impact on relationships;
(viii) Consequential psychological damage including depression.

 

(a) Most severe scarring
In relatively young claimants (typically teens to early 30s) where
the cosmetic effect is very disfiguring and the psychological
reactions severe.

 

€80,000-€200,000

 

(b) Severe scarring
Where the disfigurement is still substantial and where there is a
significant psychological reaction.

 

€60,000-€80,000

 

(c) Serious scarring
Where the worst effects have been or will be reduced by
plastic surgery leaving some cosmetic disability and where the
psychological reaction is not great or, having been considerable
at the outset, has diminished to relatively minor proportions.
Will include cases where the scarring is visible at conversational
distance.

 

€30,000-€60,000

 

(d) Moderate scarring
In these cases there may be but one scar which can be
camouflaged or, though there is a number of very small scars,
the overall effect does not markedly affect the appearance and
the reaction is no more than that of an ordinarily sensitive young
person.

 

€7,000-€30,000

 

(e) Minor scarring
In these cases, the effect is minor only.

 

€500-€7,000

 

B. Skeletal injuries to the face
(a) Le Fort Fractures of frontal facial bones

 

€50,000-€80,000

 

(b) Multiple fractures of facial bones
Involving some facial deformity of a permanent nature

 

€25,000-€50,000

 

(c) Fractures of nose or nasal complex
(i) Serious or multiple fractures requiring a number of operations
and/or resulting in permanent damage to airways, difficulty
breathing, and/or nerves and/or tear ducts and/or facial
deformity.

 

€25,000-€50,000

 

(ii) Displaced fracture where surgery was required and where
recovery is complete. Depending on the duration of symptoms
such as breathing difficulties.

 

€10,000-€25,000

 

(iii) Displaced fracture requiring no more than manipulation.
Where a full recovery is made in less than six months the
award should be towards the lower end of the bracket.

 

€3,000-€5,000

 

(iv) Simple undisplaced fracture with full recovery.

 

€500-€3,000

 

(d) Fractures of cheekbones
(i) Serious fractures requiring surgery but with lasting
consequences such as paraesthesia in the cheeks or the lips
or some element of disfigurement.

 

€25,000-€50,000

 

(ii) Simple fracture of cheekbones for which some reconstructive
surgery is necessary but from which there is a complete
recovery with no or only minimal cosmetic effects.

 

€10,000-€25,000

 

(iii) Simple fracture of cheekbone for which no surgery is required
and where a complete recovery is achieved.

 

€500-€6,000
 

(e) Fractures of jaws

 

(i) Very serious multiple fractures followed by prolonged
treatment and permanent consequences including severe
pain, restriction in eating, paraesthesia, and/or the risk of
arthritis in the joints.

 

€50,000-€80,000

 

(ii) Serious fracture with permanent consequences such as
difficulty in opening the mouth or with eating or where there
is paraesthesia in the area of the jaw.

 

€30,000-€60,000

 

(iii) Simple fracture requiring immobilisation but from which
recovery is complete.

 

€3,000-€12,000

 

C. Damage to teeth
Serious injury
In these cases there will generally have been a course of treatment as
a result of the initial injury. The amounts awarded will vary according to
the extent and/or degree of discomfort of such treatment. Any difficulty
with eating increases the award. These cases may overlap with
fractures of the jaw, meriting awards in the brackets for such fractures.
Awards may be greater where the damage results in or is caused by
protracted dentistry. Significant, chronic, tooth pain (such as from an
untreated abscess) extending over a number of years together with
significant general deterioration in the overall condition of teeth:

 

(i) Loss of or serious damage to several front teeth.

 

€12,500-€30,000

 

(ii) Loss of or serious damage to two front teeth.

 

€7,000-€15,000

 

(iii) Loss of or serious damage to one front tooth.

 

€3,500-€8,500

 

(iv) Loss of or damage to back teeth: per tooth.

 

€1,500-€3,000

10

NON FACIAL SCARRING AND BURNS

Image by Luis Villasmil

 

A. Scarring
The principles are the same as those applied to cases of facial
disfigurement. Many of the physical injuries already described will
involve some element of disfigurement and that element is, of course,
taken into account in suggesting the appropriate bracket. There remain
some cases where the element of disfigurement is the predominant
one in the assessment of damages. Where the scarring is not to the
face or is not unusually visible then the awards will tend to be lower
than those for facial or readily visible disfigurement.

 

(a) A number of noticeable laceration scars or a single disfiguring scar,
of leg(s) or arm(s) or hand(s) or back or chest.

 

€30,000-€80,000
 

b) A single noticeable scar, or several superficial scars of leg(s) or
arm(s) or hand(s), with some minor cosmetic deficit.

 

€1,000-€40,000
 

B. Burns
Burns will normally be regarded as more serious than other scarring
since they tend to cause a greater degree of pain and may lead to
continuing physical and psychological injury. Accordingly, while the level
of the award should be guided by the values set out at A. above, it is to
be expected that a scar as a result of a burn will attract a higher award
than a scar of equal significance otherwise caused. Where significant
burns cover 40% or more of the body, awards are likely to exceed

€200,000

over €200,000.
 

Considerations affecting the level of awards in burns cases will include:
(i) Age;
(ii) Percentage body area affected;
(iii) Whether the burns are full thickness, partial thickness,
superficial;
(iv) Degree of pain and suffering attributable to the injury and
subsequent treatment;
(v) Nature, extent and duration of all treatment;
(vi) Cosmetic impact of the injuries and the injured person’s
reactions to them;
(vii) Effect on enjoyment of life and leisure activities;
(viii) Impact on work;
(ix) Psychological sequelae including depression.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 

11

DAMAGE TO HAIR

Wet Hair

 

(a) Damage to hair and consequences of defective permanent
waving, tinting or the like, where the effects are dermatitis,
eczema, or tingling or “burning” of the scalp causing dry,
brittle hair, which breaks off and/or falls out, leading to
distress, depression, embarrassment, and loss of confidence
and inhibiting social life. In the more serious cases, thinning
continues and the prospects of regrowth are poor or there
has been total loss of areas of hair and regrowth is slow.
There may be a larger award in cases of significant
psychological disability or if surgical intervention is required
(for example skin grafting).

 

€12,000-€22,000

 

(b) Less serious cases of the above where symptoms are lesser;
are only of a minor character; also cases where hair has
been pulled out leaving bald patches. The level of the award
will depend on the length of time taken before regrowth
occurs. This bracket will include cases of alopecia induced
by stress causing some hair loss where full recovery is made
within two years.

 

€500-€12,000

12

DERMATITIS AND OTHER SKIN
CONDITIONS

Soft Skin

 

 

Higher awards are likely to be justified where the face is affected.
This chapter also includes other skin conditions such as eczema
and psoriasis.

 

(a) Dermatitis of both hands, with cracking and soreness,
affecting employment and domestic capability, possibly with
some psychological sequelae, expected to last more than
seven years and perhaps indefinitely.

 

€30,000-€55,000

 

(b) Rash covering other parts of the body which lasts more than
three years and may continue.

 

€18,000-€35,000

 

(c) Dermatitis of one or both hands, continuing for a significant
period, but settling within two to three years with treatment
and/or use of gloves for specific tasks.

 

€7,000-€16,000

 

(d) Itching, irritation of, and/or rashes on one or both hands,
but resolving within six months with treatment. A short
lived aggravation of a pre-existing skin condition will also fall
within this bracket.

 

€500-€3,000