What to do in the case of a road traffic accident and or personal injuries
The involvement in a car accident can be a traumatic experience for you or your passengers. In the case of a road traffic accident and if it is proven to not be your fault then you may be entitled to claim for any injuries suffered together with any financial loss due to the damage to your car
Road traffic accidents are the most common source of claims to the Injuries Board and are due to causes such as: - speeding, driving under the influence of alcohol, bad driving or a momentary lapse of concentration leading to an accident.
What to do in the event of a road traffic accident: -
- You should establish whether you or any of your passengers have sustained any injuries.
- Ascertain if you, your passengers or the occupants of any other vehicle which have crashed into are injured if so, you should call an Ambulance to the scene of the crash regardless whether they think the injuries are serious or not.
- You should report the incident to the local Garda Station. The Gardai may attend at the scene of the accident to take important details such as the names of the drivers, car registration, insurance information and they may then speak to all parties involved and exchange these details. Once again, these reports may be required in the event that you decide to take a claim sometime after the accident.
- You should also contact your own Insurance Company immediately as most insurance contracts will require you to do so.
- You should not leave the scene of the accident until you gather all the details and nor should the offending vehicle. At the scene of the accident you should gather as much information as possible, take photographs setting out the scene of the accident and taking further details such as the following: - name, address, telephone number of the driver, car registration, insurance details. Name and address of any witnesses to the accident.
- Make a sketch or drawing or take a photograph using your smart phone to record details such as street names, location of the road, direction of the traffic and the point of collision.
- Take note of the weather and time of the accident.
Medical attention is an important factor in personal injuries as you may need to take up a Medical Report or a report from the Accident and Emergency Department of the hospital you attend if an Ambulance is called to a scene of an accident.
Following the car accident and once liability has been decided you may then decide to make a claim using your Solicitor. Liability is the apportionment of blame for the accident. It may be straight forward or it may be complicated if no party is apparently at fault then further experts such as Engineers may be required to give an opinion on the apportionment of blame at a later date as part of the claims process.
INJURIES BOARD: -
The first step in submitting a claim is with the Injuries Board for assessment. Your Solicitor will help you in preparing your application to the Injuries board to ensure that you follow the process correctly and that you make a claim within the correct time limit.
You will require a medical report and the identity of the owners and drivers of the car which caused the accident.
You are entitled to claim for damages in an accident, there are general damages which are non-financial and are for pain and suffering, physical and emotional injuries and secondly special damages which are out of pocket expenses incurred from the accident such as loss of earnings, medical reports, medical bills, travel costs and material damage which is damage to your personal property in a car crash being the damage to your car.
There is a set time limit on the claim for a Personal Injury claim which is referred to the statute of limitations which is the length of time you have to make a claim following an accident. You have two years from the date of the accident to bring a claim for a personal injury otherwise that claim will fail as you have not initiated the claim within the specific time period. There are of course exceptions to the limit in the case of children the longer you leave to make a claim the less time you have to pursue a claim therefore you should contact a Solicitor immediately following an accident.
For more information on personal injury claims please contact us for a consultation.
*In contentious business, a solicitor may not calculate fees or other charges as a percentage or proportion of any award or settlement