Crime of omission, this is not normally what an injured person thinks is applicable to them ( the injured party ), when they are going about their business and an accident happens due to the fault of another’s negligence and they decide to pursue a course of action. However, this is what was argued recently towards a personal injury claimant who the court concluded gave false information in relation to their personal injury claim.
If a person who brings a personal injury claim is found by the court to give false, dishonest, misleading information relating to their claim they can receive a sentence of ten years and or a fine of €100,000.
The law in Ireland on this is outlined in the Civil Liability Act 2004.
S. 25 of that Act, state’s, a person gives or dishonestly causes to be given, or adduces or dishonestly causes to be adduced, evidence in a personal injuries action that— is false or misleading in any material respect, and that he she knows to be false or misleading, he/she will be guilty of an offence.
Person gives, or dishonestly causes to be given, an instruction or information, in relation to a personal injuries action, to a solicitor, or person acting on behalf of a solicitor, or an expert, that— is false or misleading in any material respect, and that he she knows to be false or misleading, he/she will be guilty of an offence
A dishonest act is simply defined an act that was intended to mislead the court.
So the law is clear then, if anyone pursuing a personal injury claim gives false information to the court, to their solicitor, to a doctor, orthopaedic surgeon etc. or any expert involved in or hired by the injured person then that person if the lie is proved in court can be sentenced to jail and or fined. This is a mighty consequence for being found to bring a fraudulent claim. A person could go to jail, incur a fine of €100,000, lose their freedom, lose the personal injury case they had, and may have to pay the costs of bringing the case in the first place to the defendant.
S.26 of the Civil Liability Act state’s that the court will dismiss a claim where the person who brought the claim is found to have given false or misleading evidence.
If one was to bring an unmeritorious claim based on deceit and lies; there can be a very heavy price to pay in Ireland to take this route in the form of prison and or a huge fine.
In contentious business, a Solicitor may not calculate fees or other charges as a percentage or proportion of any award or settlement.