State payouts for personal injury claims double to €20 million
An Garda Síochána, Defence Forces and Prison Service top list for highest payouts
An Garda Síochána paid out €3.5 million in 2017, and €28 million over the last seven years, the most for personal injury claims among State bodies. File photograph: Cyril Byrne
State bodies not involved in healthcare paid out €20 million last year for personal injury claims, nearly double the amount paid out four years ago.
And the sums for such general claims have increased dramatically over the last seven years.
General claims are separate from clinical injury claims made against healthcare bodies, which can be significantly higher due to potential long-term impacts of complications.
In 2010, some €9.7 million was paid out by State authorities for general claims, which increased to €11.6 million in 2013, €14.5 million in 2015 and €20.2 million last year.
An Garda Síochána paid out €3.5 million in 2017, and €28 million over the last seven years, the most for personal injury claims among State bodies, apart from healthcare groups.
The Irish Prison Service paid out €4 million last year, nearly double the €2.2 million paid out in claims in 2015.
Tusla, the Child and Family Protection Agency has seen the largest rise in the amount being paid out for personal injury claims in recent years. In 2015, the body paid out €856,756 in injury claims, which quadrupled to €3.4 million the next year, and increased again to €4.2 million in 2017.
The Defence Forces have paid out €23 million since 2010, the second highest amount paid out by a State body. The Defence Forces paid out €3.2 million last year, and have consistently paid out between €2 million and €3 million over the last number of years.
An Garda Síochána paid out the highest amount in a single year, paying €4.6 million in injury claims in 2016.
The Office of Public Works paid out €743,081 last year in injury claims, and €5.6 million in total since 2010. The Department of Social Protection paid out just under a quarter of a million euro last year, at €242,344.
The amount paid out by healthcare bodies in medical injury claims has also increased dramatically over the last number of years. In 2010 some €77.7 million was paid out by healthcare groups in clinical personal injury claims, this increased to €118 million by 2013.
The sharp increase in clinical payouts rose to €191 million in 2015, and €248 million last year. Personal injury claims can relate to patients, service users, staff and members of the public on the premises of a state body.
The payout figures includes the amount awarded to individuals, legal and professional fees, as well as expenses.
The latest figures on the amount State bodies have paid out in personal injury claims was obtained by Fianna Fáil spokesman for finance Michael McGrath in a parliamentary question.
Payouts for general personal injury claims from 2010 to 2017:
An Garda Síochána - €28,319,892
Defence Forces - €23,667,369
Irish Prison Service - €19,048,806
Tusla - €11,016,039
Office of Public Works - €5,674,853
Community and Comprehensive Schools- €4,488,421
Department of Social Protection - €2,256,483
Residential Institutions - €2,209,889
Day Schools - €1,188,002
Department of Health - €1,528,175
Revenue Commissioners - €1,350,232
Solas - €1,194,343
National Museum of Ireland - €1,148,981
Department of Agriculture - €1,146,088
Courts Service - €951,445