I have been contacted by my employer’s insurance company with an offer of €5,000 as compensation for lacerations in a factory. How can I check to see if this compensation amount is fair?

Eoin P. Campbell, LL.B., Solicitor

Editor in Chief

Eoin P. Campbell

You are right to query the amount of compensation for lacerations in a factory you have been offered. Any offer of compensation by an insurance company is for a full and final settlement for the accident, and once it is accepted no further claims can be made. It is therefore important that any offer of compensation is assessed before a decision is made to accept it or to make a claim for lacerations in a factory through the Injuries Board.

One way that you can check the amount of compensation for lacerations in a factory is to consult the Book of Quantum. The Book of Quantum is a reference book used by the Injuries Board to assist its claims assessors when calculating the level of compensation which is applicable for a particular injury. Although the Book of Quantum can give you an idea of the range of compensation for lacerations in a factory which you should be entitled to receive, it cannot be used in isolation to calculate an exact amount of compensation for a particular injury. The Injuries Board takes other factors into consideration such as the age and sex of the claimant, whether you are expected to be able to make a full recovery and whether any visible scarring will remain after your injury has healed. This will determine where your injury falls within the range provided.

For a more accurate assessment of an insurance company offer for compensation for factory lacerations, you should speak with an independent personal injury solicitor. Even an experienced personal injury solicitor will not be able to tell you the exact amount of compensation you will receive if you pursue a claim for lacerations in a factory through the Injuries Board; however after listening to your account of your injuries together with the information you have been given by a doctor and details of the expenses you have incurred so far as a result of your injuries, a more accurate calculation can be made. When you have this figure it will be much easier to make a decision about whether to accept the offer of compensation, or whether you should pursue a more appropriate settlement by making a compensation claim for lacerations in a factory through the Injuries Board.

As a general rule of thumb, offers of compensation which are made by an insurance company are usually much lower than can be achieved by claiming compensation for factory lacerations through the Injuries Board. Insurance company offers do not take ‘Special Damages’ into consideration, and are rarely based on detailed medical information about the extent of an accident victim’s injuries. For this reason we recommend speaking with a personal injury solicitor before making a decision about whether to accept or reject the offer which has been made to you.