Introduction to Local Authority Claims
Wherever you live in Ireland, your local area is, generally speaking, governed by either a City Council or County Council – sometimes referred to as a Local Authority.
The role of these Councils is to manage the running of each area and maintain the roads, footpaths and parks etc. Councils might also have responsibility for the upkeep of playgrounds, public carparks, green areas, street lights, drainage and sport facilities.
Councils also employ staff and are responsible for their safety.
Personal Injury Claims against Councils predominantly occur when an accident happens as a result of the Council’s negligence.
If you have been injured in a public place, contact Cantillons Solicitors about making a Personal Injury Claim.
What are the common causes of Personal Injury Claims against the Council or Local Authorities?
There are a number of causes of claims against Local Authorities in Ireland. In our experience. the top 4 causes of claims are:
- Road Condition Claims
Unfortunately, Irish roads have a notorious reputation for being of a poor standard. This can be because of lack of local funding, poor design, improper maintenance, poor repair work and even bad training of road crews. Whatever the reason, if you are injured because of poor road conditions, you may be entitled to bring a Personal Injury Claim.
- Substandard Repairs
Within each local authority there are teams dedicated to the maintenance and repair of public areas. This includes the maintenance and repair of footpaths, walls, fencing and playgrounds. It is the responsibility of the Council to ensure that these teams have adequate training and equipment, and that they carry out the work to the appropriate standard. If repairs are carried out to a poor standard, and you suffer an injury as a result, then you may be entitled to bring a Personal Injury Claim. For example, if trench is dug in a path for the purposes of laying a new pipe, the infill of that trench should not result in a lip, which might cause a person to fall.
- Employees of Councils who sustain Injuries
- Accidents in the Councils’ Buildings – such as libraries, Civic Offices, Courthouses etc.
How to determine if you have a Personal Injury Claim against the Council or Local Authority?
In order to determine if you have a Personal Injury Claim against your Local Authority, City Counsil or Count Council, you should first contact a Personal Injury Solicitor. Your Personal Injuries Solicitor will assist you in determining the validity, and strength, of your Personal Injury Case. When assessing the your case, your Personal Injury Solicitor will look at:
- The location of your accident to establish who is responsible.
- The events surrounding your accident.
- The cause of the accident.
- The extent of your injuries.
- How the accident and injuries have impacted your life and work.
What can you claim for in a Personal Injuries Claim against the Council or Local Authority?
When making a claim against the Council or Local Authority, you are making a claim for compensation for your pain and suffering (both physical and psychological) as a result of the personal injury.
Compensation claims also take into account expenses which have been incurred, including, for example:
- Medical bills from Doctors, Hospitals and Physiotherapists.
- Medication expenses.
- Loss of earnings.
- Legal costs.
- Travel costs.
- Home adjustments related to your injuries; safety rails, ramps etc.
What types of Personal Injury Claims can be made against the Council?
Common Personal Injury Claims made against Councils in Ireland, include:
- Bone fractures and breaks.
- Injured ankles and knees.
- Damaged shoulders.
- Injured arms, including wrist injuries.
- Back injuries.
- Head injuries.
How to make a claim against the Council or Local Authority in Ireland
If you are injured on property owned or managed by a Council, then you may be able to bring a Compensation Claim. The following steps should be undertaken if you wish to bring a claim against a Council or Local Authority:
- Tell the Council
After you have received the required medical attention, you should report the accident.
- Gather information
To make a Personal Injuries Compensation Claim, you will be required to submit certain evidence. When you are well enough to do you should gather certain information, including:
- Witness details
Collect the names and contact details of anyone that witnessed the accident.
If you are in a position to take photos of the area where the accident occurred (for example the uneven ground upon which you tripped), you should do so. However, your health is the priority and you should you seek medical attention in the first instance. It is always possible to return and take pictures at a later date. If someone is with you at the time, ask them to take photos.
If signage or lack of signage is an issue that led to your accident, then ensure you photograph this too.
You will also need photographs of your injuries. We recommend taking these before and after treatment. Also take photos in the following days.
If you have had expenses that relate to your accident, keep all receipts and bills as these will have to be included in your claim.
- Contact a Local Authority Claims Solicitor
When you are well enough, you should contact a Personal Injuries Solicitor. A Solicitor who is experienced in claims against the Council will be able to guide you through the claim process.
What are the legal time limits for claims against a local authority?
There are strict time limits within which personal injury actions must be taken. Generally speaking the time limit is two years but on occasions, the time limits may be shorter or longer. If you have suffered an injury, you should contact a member of our team as soon as possible.
Speak To Cantillons Solicitors Local Authority Claims Solicitors Today
At Cantillons Solicitors we have a proven track record in helping our clients with claims against local authorities.
We have launched proceedings for clients who have suffered injuries as a result of defective footpaths, defective roads and due to local authority negligence. We have also acted for a number of Local Authority employees injured during the course of their work.
If you are considering making a personal injury claim against your local council, Cantillons Solicitors can help. Contact us at Cantillons Solicitors on +353 (0)21 4275673 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
* In contentious business, a solicitor may not calculate fees or other charges as a percentage or proportion of any award or settlement. You might come across Personal Injury Solicitors portray themselves as ‘no win no fee’ Solicitors. These terms can be misleading and it is essential that you discuss fees with the Personal Injury Solicitor you ultimately choose. At Cantillons Solicitors, we pride ourselves on being entirely transparent about our processes and fees.