Will I have to go to court to recover compensation for laser eye surgery errors after I developed night vision problems which will need revision surgery to correct?

Eoin P. Campbell, LL.B., Solicitor

Editor in Chief

Eoin P. Campbell

Although claims for compensation for laser eye surgery errors are considered to be medical negligence claims, and consequently any applications submitted to the Injuries Board Ireland will be declined, you may be able to recover compensation for laser eye surgery errors without a court hearing.

Your first course of action should be to speak with an experienced medical negligence solicitor. The solicitor will organise an eye examination by an expert ophthalmologist and a review of your notes prior to and during the medical procedure you underwent. The solicitor will also ask you about what information you were given regarding the potential risks of the procedure before you signed the medical consent form. Even if it is discovered that no injury was sustained due to a lack of skill, the lack of “informed consent” may be grounds to proceed with a compensation claim for laser eye surgery errors.

Once it has been established that an avoidable injury has occurred due to the lack of skill of the surgeon who performed your laser eye surgery – or that you were not fully informed of the potential risks of undergoing laser eye surgery – a Letter of Claim will be sent to the surgeon, advising him or her that you are making a claim for compensation for laser eye surgery errors. The Letter of Claim will be supported by the evidence compiled by the ophthalmologist and/or by your solicitor´s examination of the medical consent form.

If liability for your night vision problems is admitted, your solicitor will enter into negotiations with the eye surgeon´s medical insurance company to obtain the maximum possible settlement of laser eye surgery errors compensation on your behalf. Only if liability is denied or there is a dispute over how much compensation for laser eye surgery errors you are entitle to, might you claim have to be heard in court.

As a general rule, insurance companies will avoid court action wherever possible – especially when a solicitor has constructed a sufficiently strong case on your behalf. Even if your solicitor has to issue court proceedings, it is often the case that an insurance company will settle a claim for laser eye surgery errors compensation rather than take a chance on how a judge may view your case and how much the judge might award in compensation for laser eye surgery errors.

As night vision problems can have a substantial influence on your quality of life, it would be in your best interests to speak with an experienced medical negligence solicitor at the first possible opportunity in order that your claim can be resolved quickly and a settlement of compensation for laser eye surgery errors organised to pay for the revision surgery you need.