Average personal injury award fell last year


A REDUCTION in the average value of personal injury claims awarded last year has been attributed to a lower proportion of individuals making claims after being hurt in the workplace.

Injuriesboard.ie, the independent statutory body responsible for dealing with such claims, said compensation of some €210 million was awarded last year in respect of 9,833 personal injury claimants.

In its 2011 review, the board said the highest award paid out was €829,444 – the largest ever.

The number of awards granted rose by 17 per cent year-on-year, with the total paid out rising by 12 per cent to €209.8 million. The average sum awarded fell last year by 3.8 per cent to €21,339.

Injuriesboard.iechief executive Patricia Byron said the drop reflected the reduced number of work-related claims being processed and that lower losses of earnings were being incurred due to reduced salaries across the economy.

“Workplace injuries were significantly driven by activity in the construction sector, where workers were more likely to receive more complex and high value injuries,” she said. “The fall off in employment and downward pressure on [earnings] has been feeding into lower claims costs.”

Overall, more than three-quarters of awards were for road traffic injuries, with public (15.1 per cent) and workplace injuries (8.4 per cent) accounting for the balance.