I would like to know how much compensation for back injury I am entitled to after a car accident.

Eoin P. Campbell, LL.B., Solicitor

Editor in Chief

Eoin P. Campbell

How much compensation for a back injury an individual receives depends on a variety of factors, ranging on the severity of the injury to the effect it has had on your life. A solicitor would be able to give you a preliminary estimate of the amount of compensation you are entitled to, by considering your cases’ individual merits.

An important issue that should be noted is that of liability. There must, of course, be a negligent party involved in the accident. Furthermore, if you can be found to have contributed to the accident or severity of your injury in any way, by not wearing a seatbelt, for example, you may be accused of what’s known as “contributory negligence” and the amount of compensation you should be entitled to could be reduced by up to 25%.

Pain and suffering is a major factor in determining how much compensation for a back injury you are entitled to and the amount rewarded will be influenced by the severity of your injury and your age, state of health before the accident and, in some cases, your sex. It has been acknowledged by medical experts that those involved in traffic accidents as likely to experience some degree of post-traumatic stress which can affect individuals in different ways but can be included in the final value of your claim.

If the case may be that you cannot perform day-to-day tasks without suffering pain, or that you are unable to partake in a social or leisure activity that you once enjoyed, how much compensation for a back injury you receive may also include compensation for your “loss of amenity”, i.e. the effect that your injury has had on your quality of life. It may be possible for any financial expenses that can be directly attributed to your injury to be recovered, such as renovations to your house to accommodate a wheelchair, the cost of a home help to care for your elderly parents or any future loss of earnings.

A solicitor would be able to give you a preliminary estimate of how much compensation for back injury you should qualify for and could advise whether or not you have a claim worth pursuing, in the initial consultation that most solicitors offer free of charge. It would be in your best interest to engage with a solicitor as soon as possible following the accident, after you have been examined and treated accordingly by a professional medical practitioner.