Car Accident Claims in Ireland

If you have been injured in an accident and suffered detriment with respect to physical injury and loss, you may be considering what your legal options are. Each persons facts are different but a common loss to a person in such a circumstance is loss of earnings.

Drivers are entitled to a duty of care from other drivers.

Under the Road Traffic Acts a person is required to drive with due care and attention. Driving causing serious bodily harm is also an offence under the Road Traffic Acts. Many accidents have simple causes, such as, a lack of observance while texting.

If you have a query about such a matter, we can be contacted on one of the numbers at the contact us section of our website. You will see a number of frequently asked questions answered below in this post also.

Car Accident Claims

Road Traffic Laws Ireland

A number of legal duties arise for a vehicle driver in the event of an accident where a person is injured or property is damaged.

If a road accident takes place and an injury is caused, the driver of the car should stop the vehicle and offer assistance. Sometimes this does not happen. The driver must keep the car near the accident place and should give the Garda Siochana member at the scene information.

If the driver absconds from the accident scene knowing the injured party needs medical care, a person may be liable on indictment to a fine of up to €10,000 and/or imprisonment for seven years.

If the driver absconds from the accident scene knowing the injured party is dead, a person may be liable on indictment to a fine of up to €20,000 and/or imprisonment for ten years.

Driving Disqualification & Penalty Points

A person found liable for this offence can attract a driving disqualification if certain conditions are met and 5 penalty points on conviction.

Frequently Asked Questions
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I claim from an uninsured driver ?

Many people have the question is it worth taking a case against an uninsured driver and it’s a good question.

We hope this post will of assistance when you are considering this with the detail you now have as mentioned above.

How do I take a case against someone who hit my car with no insurance ?

You can send a demand letter to the offending party requesting confirmation and detail of their insurance and you must send them whats called a letter of claim calling upon them to admit liability indicating to the facts.

Then you should proceed to notify the M.I.B.I. mentioned above immediately and try to obtain the insurance details of the other party from the Gards perhaps.

What do you do when an uninsured motorist hits you ?

It is prudent to contact the Gardai as soon as possible and maintain any information such as registration, drivers name etc. you can obtain.

How do car accident claims* work ?

An initial step for any injured party who wishes to initiate a personal injury* claim is to notify the allegedly offending party of your intention to make the claim within one month of the date of the accident. Such claims are submitted to the ‘Board’. The Personal Injuries Assessment Board is a statutory body that carries out its own private, independent assessment of a persons personal injury claim*.

It will not assess claims regarding the provision of any medical or surgical procedure in relation to a person, or the provision of any medical advice or treatment to a person.

A purely paper-based system, it never carries out oral hearings but assesses claims with regard to medical evidence, such as the medical report furnished by the injured party to the Board.

If the person who caused the injury consents to the Injuries Board assessing the application, or if they fail to state in writing whether they consent to the assessment or not, the Injuries Board will proceed to carry out the assessment.

If the person who causes the accident states in writing that they do not consent to the Injuries Board making an assessment, the Injuries Board will issue whats termed an authorisation, which permits the applicant (injured party) to bring legal proceedings.

How long after a car accident* can you claim ?

There is a limit regarding how long an injured person has to initiate a personal injury* legal action. This limit is pursuant to the statute of limitations act and if surpassed, it can cause your claim to be whats termed as statute barred from court.

One has two years from the date of the accident to initiate the legal action.

One important point to remember is evidence can get lost or not retained etc. so speaking with your solicitor early post accident if you are considering making a claim to the Injuries Board for your car accident claim can be very beneficial for your case, as crucial details can get retained.

What is the car accident claim* process ?

Here is an article we prepared which may provide you with the information you are looking for, which can be found here.

How long does a car accident claim* take ?

There is no one singular answer that can be given which works for everybody.

It depends on the individual case for many reasons, but we will give a general guide here.

Personal Injury* claims must be submitted to the Personal Injuries Assessment Board for assessment. On average, claims made to PIAB are assessed within 9 months from the date the Board notifies the party who the claim is taken against.

If the case is dealt with and concluded at this point to the satisfaction of the parties, the entire timeframe could be 9 months to one year. If the matter is not dealt with by the Injuries Board, the injured party may have the option of proceeding to court to seek a Judgement from the court.

Some factors that may affect how long a case takes include:

  • Once an application has been made to the Personal Injuries Assessment Board, it usually takes between 9 months to 1 year before it is concluded.
  • If one of the parties does not agree to the Injuries Board making an assessment, the matter can proceed to court.
  • If an assessment sum is not agreed to by one party, the matter can proceed to court.
  • How long will the court case process take depends on various factors, such as, is the case straightforward for complex ?.
  • Is there one injury or multiple injuries ?.
  • What is the attitude of the defendant to the case ?.
  • Has liability been admitted or is it contested ?.
  • Has the injury stabilised ?.
  • Has the treatment concluded ?. Has the injured parties doctors recommended further treatment ?. Detail of the further treatment is then required.
  • What number of experts reports are required ?.
  • Is it easy or difficult to obtain expert reports ?.
  • Is it easy or difficult to obtain medical records ?.
  • Have the legal pleadings concluded? In the High Court, the defence must be provided to the injured parties solicitor within 8 weeks from the time the summons is served. This is not a long time, and in personal injury* cases one must proceed step by step in conjunction with the guidance of the doctor(s) assisting the injured party. Medical care can take time, recovery can take time, and guidance from the doctor and the patient’s thoughts on their own rehabilitation are important considerations in terms of assessing controlling the speed of a case.

What is the Garda Accident Report?

This is called the Garda Abstract Report and details the parties involved in the accident and information particulars, such as names, insurance details etc.

How long after a car accident can I claim ?

If a person has been injured in an accident due to negligence, the timeframe within which one must take the claim is 2 years from the date of the accident. There is a separate rule for what is termed date of knowledge, but the individuals facts needs to be assessed and the rule applied on a case by case basis.

Whiplash Injury Claims

Damages in such claims in Ireland are divided between General Damages and Special Damages.

Whiplash injuries despite it’s simple name can sometimes be complex. Included within the symptoms can be alot of headaches.

Car accidents for obvious reasons can result in this injury type commonly.

If the persons injury to the neck is within the moderate category, then the following guideline for General Damages can be of assistance.

(c) Moderate neck injuries
Injuries which may have accelerated and/or exacerbated a preexisting condition over a shorter period of time, usually less than five years. This bracket will also apply to moderate soft tissue injuries where the period of recovery has been relatively protracted and where there remains an increased vulnerability to further trauma or permanent minimal symptoms €12,000-€23,000 is the guidline in Ireland for such injury which is considered within the moderate category.

Can I take a car accident claim if I was partially at fault ?

Facts are obviously individual to the circumstances, but it can arise whereby the injured party has been injured to to the negligence of another, but they have an element of contribution to the cause of the incident. Each case needs individual assessment, but yes a person can still commence a legal case if they are partially at fault.

How long do I have to file a road traffic accident claim in Ireland ?

One must file ie register the claim within 2 years of the accident. The respondent ie party responsible for causing the incident must be notified within one month of the incident, if the injured party deems them liable.

What types of compensation can I claim after a road accident in Ireland ?

A person can be eligible of expense loss individual to them, but broadly speaking it is general damages ie for the pain and suffering and then special damages, which can include medical expenses, loss of earnings etc.

Can I claim compensation if the other driver was uninsured or fled the scene ?

The Motor Insurers Bureau of Ireland was created to compensate victims of road traffic accidents in circumstances where the offending driver is unidentifiable or uninsured.

Can I claim for emotional distress after a road accident ?


Medical evidence will need to be obtained regarding a psychological consequence matter.

Can I claim for lost wages if I couldn’t work due to the accident ?.


Can I claim if the accident involved a hit-and-run driver ?

The Motor Insurers Bureau of Ireland was created to compensate victims of road traffic accidents in circumstances where the the offending driver is unidentifiable or uninsured.

Should I hire a solicitor after a road traffic accident ?

Legally speaking to commence and conclude your case no you don’t.

It is simply and judgement call on the persons behalf whether they want a service provider to assist them or not. The service provider will likely have a history of adding value to cases and dealing with cases for people and you can discuss this with them at an appointment.


Please be advised that the above-mentioned material is intended as an overview and as a broad outline of the topic discussed. It should not be considered as complete and comprehensive legal advice, nor act as an appropriate substitute.

Due care has been taken in the publication of this article and we do not accept legal liability as a result of reliance on any material covered in the above article.

Personal Injuries * In contentious business, a Solicitor may not calculate fees or other charges as a percentage or proportion of any award or settlement.

Cleary & Co. Solicitors, Litigation Law Firm

If you have been in a road traffic accident and wish to have a claim assessment, Kieran Cleary and Roger Cleary are experienced Personal Injury Solicitors who can help with questions you may have regarding a personal injury case.

Contact details are (01) 546 1121 or  (052) 612 1999 or our email address is

Areas of Personal Injury Law

Fatal Injury Accident ClaimsSpinal & Back
Injury Claims
Work Accident Claims
Cycling Accident
Public Place Accident ClaimAsbestos Injury Claims
Garda CompensationAcquired Brain Injury (ABI)
Holiday Accident Claims
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Injury Claim
Personal Injury
Claims Process
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Vibration Industrial Accident Claim*Ladder Accident Claim*Aviation Accident Claims
Motorbike Accident Claim
Injuries Board Application Guide

Uninsured Driver Claims
Bullying at the Workplace

Road Traffic Accident Claim

Roger Cleary

Need Legal Advice ? No Problem. Contact us today !

We help people injured due to negligence* attain restitution to their pre-accident position, as much as is possible, for the pain, suffering & financial loss, by seeking damages from the negligent party on their behalf.