04 Jul Making a Fatal Injury Claim
It can be very difficult to deal with the death of a loved one and while a fatal injury claim will never be able to compensate for the loss of a family member, it can help provide dependents of the deceased with some financial stability.
Fatal injuries can happen because of medical negligence, workplace accidents or road accidents. If a member of your family has died in an accident caused by someone else, you have two years from the date of death to make a fatal injury claim against those responsible.
What is a fatal injury claim?
A fatal injury claim is a legal action which can be taken after someone dies because of the negligence or wrongful act of someone else. Fatal injury claims aren’t considered compensation, but rather an attempt to reduce the financial burdens on the dependents of the deceased. In these cases, evidence of liability is required and often comes in the form of medical records, medical reports or police reports.
Who can make a fatal injury claim?
Dependents of the deceased person can make a fatal injury claim. Only one claim can be made against the same person in relation to a death so it is necessary that one case is brought on behalf of all the deceased person’s dependents.
Dependents are usually immediate family members of the deceased who have suffered financially and emotionally because of the death.
Dependents taking a case can include:
- A spouse, partner or ex-partner
Claims can only be made if you have suffered financial loss or mental distress as a result of the death. You can make a claim for:
- Financial losses – Proof of loss and the amount the deceased could have provided if they had not died is necessary
- Funeral expenses – Costs associated with burial, cremation, coffins, transport, headstones, etc.
- Mental distress – Up to €35,000 can be awarded to dependents as an acknowledgement of grief
The process of making a fatal injury claim
Claimants are required to send a fatal injury claim to the Personal Injuries Assessment Board (PIAB). The process followed is similar to when someone makes a personal injury claim. Each case is assessed individually by the Board. If the defendant admits liability then it recommends an award amount. This can be accepted or rejected by either party. If rejected, the case may go to court – usually the High Court. Adjudication will also be needed if PIAB decides the case is too difficult to assess.
If you want to make a fatal injury claim, get in touch with one of our experienced solicitors. The team at Ferrys Solicitors Personal Injury and Accident Solicitors can help you with this difficult process.