PIAB Assessments for Personal Injury cases

Since the coming into force of PIAB (Personal Injuries Assessment Board) Act 2003, Personal Injury Claims, with some exceptions, must be assessed by PIAB, before any Court Proceedings can be issued. Once we have obtained the necessary medical reports, we will present your case to PIAB on your behalf.

In order for our firm to put your claim through PIAB we must first take up a medical report from your treating doctor. This report will outline all of the injuries sustained by you as a result of your accident. This report is very important asPIAB will base their assessment of your claim solely on the contents of your medical report along with the report of an independent medical practitioner. Once we have received the report from your doctor we will send a copy of it to you along with a Form A. The Form A is the application form which must be completed and signed by you in order for the Injuries Board to deal with your claim.

If you have been involved in previous accidents or think that it may be necessary to bring your claim against more than one person/company, if your injuries are serious and no final prognosis has been given, if you are suffering with psychological injuries or if you were suffering with previous injuries or illness it is highly recommended that you seek the advice of an experienced solicitor before making an application to PIAB. If you have decided to make an application to the Board yourself, without using the services of a solicitor, we will be happy to arrange a consultation with you to look at the paperwork and advise as to whether or not we believe that the Board has made a fair assessment of your claim.

At Synnott Lawline Solicitors we specialise in PIAB applications. We provide expert advice throughout the entire process and ensure that each and every client receives our full care and attention. We ensure that the Board adheres to the time limits imposed on it and deal with all queries from the Board on your behalf.

When your application is received by the Board they will issue a letter called a ‘Section 50 Letter’. This letter confirms that PIAB has received your application. Once this letter is issued the Statute of Limitations stops running against you. Under the Statute of Limitations a claimant has two years from the accident date within which to bring a claim for compensation. Once the two year term has expired the claim becomes statute barred, meaning the claimant is no longer able to claim compensation for the injuries sustained. The application must be received by PIAB before the expiration of the two year time period. The Statute then stops running while the claim is being assessed by the Board. If the claim does not settle at the Injuries Board stage, and the claimant is issued with an Authorisation by the Board, the claimant is given a further six months within which to issue proceedings.
If PIAB is going ahead with an assessment, it has 9 months from the date of the decision to make an assessment within which to make it. The next step for the Board will be to have the claimant assessed by an independent doctor in order to take up a medical legal report. Once the Board is in receipt of the completed Schedule of Special Damages, Certificate of Loss of Earnings (if appropriate) and the medical report, they will proceed to make an assessment. We (the Solicitor) will be notified in writing of the award being made by the Board. The claimant is given 28 days to decide whether or not they wish to accept the award. The respondent is given 21 days within which to make the same decision. If both parties accept the assessment then an ‘Order to Pay’ will issue and the claimant’s cheque is usually requisitioned within 6 weeks. If one or both parties reject the assessment, the Board will issue an Authorisation, allowing the claimant to issue court proceedings. Just because court proceedings are issued does not mean that the claimant/plaintiff will end up in court. If we do end up issuing proceedings on your behalf, in the majority of cases the claim settles before going to trial.

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If you have a question about PIAB, contact us on Locall 1850 20 40 60, Tel: 01 453 7890 Email us or tell about your case and start your claim today.

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It should be noted that PIAB usually does not award any costs, so your Legal Fees must come out of the figure assessed by them. The foregoing is a very brief synopsis of the workings of PIAB and needless to say, there are all sorts of diverse situations which can and do arise, and we will of course fully advise you in relation to your particular circumstance. Read More >

If the claimant’s injuries are in any way complicated or complex the Board will not be in a position to make an assessment. They can only make an assessment where there is a final prognosis available to them from a doctor i.e. the Board needs to be provided with a specific timeframe within which the claimant is expected to recover from their injuries.
If the claimant has been involved in previous accidents, wherein they sustained similar injuries, the Board will not be in a position to make an assessment. In this situation, it will be necessary to obtain the medical records of the claimant in order to ascertain the injuries sustained in those previous accidents. These records are usually requested by the respondent/defendant during a process called ‘Discovery’, this process cannot be dealt with at the Injuries Board stage. If the claimant has had more than one accident within a short period of time, the Board will not be in a position to make an assessment.

PIAB will notify the other side, or more usually their Insurers, of the application. The other side has the option of consenting to the The PIAB Assessment Procedure, or of declining. If they decline, then The Board take no further part, and we will then issue Court Proceedings for compensation for your injuries, loss, damage and expense. If the other side consent to the The PIAB Assessment, then they will consider the medical reports furnished by both sides, and possible, (any independent reports commissioned, and it will produce a valuation of the claim, usually within 9 – 15 months.

There is no oral hearing. If you are willing to accept the Assessment and provided the other side are willing to pay it, then this is the end of the matter. However if either you or the other side does not accept the Assessment, then the claim will proceed under the former system of Court Litigation.

If you have been involved in an accident, whether it be an accident at work, an accident in a public place or a road traffic accident, your claim must be processed through the Injuries Board.

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