In 1989, the vulnerability of children on farms was highlighted by a report commissioned by the Royal College of Surgeons, which concluded by claiming that the Irish farming community was still unappreciative of the risks to children on a farm and the potential for a child farm accident. The report called for more education and legislation to improve the safety profile of Irish farms: in the intervening years, a substantial number of laws have been passed to this effect.
However, fifteen years later (2005), statistics issued by the Health and Safety Authority revealed that there was still an average of four child fatalities each year on Irish farms due to a child farm accident. Although that figure has now been reduced by 50%, the continuing number of casualties as a result of a child farm accident has prompted the HSA to produce a four year “Farm Safety Action Plan” (2009 – 2012) which includes educating children about the hazards on a farm. This complements their “Code of Practise on Preventing Accidents and Young Persons in Agriculture”.
It would appear that the HSA is taking every possible step to prevent child farm accidents, and therefore the reason for the continuing number of child casualties on farms has to be that farmers are not adhering to the health and safety regulations put in place to prevent such accidents. Where your child has suffered an injury in a child farm accident, and where there is evidence to suggest the farmer has shown a lack of care in the prevention of accidents, you are entitled to claim compensation for the child´s physical trauma.
Claiming Child Farm Accident Compensation
Under Irish law, a claim for child farm accident compensation has to be made by their parent or guardian who acts as their “next friend” and, although the process is identical to making a personal injury* claim through the Injuries Board Ireland, awards of compensation to children have to be approved by a court before the funds can be released. Consequently, you will need legal representation at the end of the process, but there are a number of good reasons why you should also choose to use the assistance of a solicitor to make a child farm accident compensation claim.
An experienced personal injury* claims solicitor is familiar with all the processes involved in making a child farm accident compensation claim and will be able to thoroughly compile a comprehensive application to the Injuries Board Ireland at a time when your primary concern should be for the health of your child and when your emotional state may impair your accuracy in completion of forms. Furthermore, if issues arise such as the farmer denying his liability for the child farm accident, a solicitor will be more knowledgeable of the regulations in the Codes of Practise issued by the HSA to swiftly resolve the dispute.
If your child has suffered an injury in a child farm accident, once their immediate wellbeing has received appropriate medical attention, you should call our free advice telephone service . This service will enable you to speak with a solicitor with whom you can discuss the circumstances surrounding the child farm accident and your entitlement to claim compensation. You will also receive some impartial and practical advice to assist you with your claim and ensure that your child receives a fair and adequate award for compensation for the physical trauma they have suffered.
What You Can Expect When You Call
We have had over twenty years of experience in dealing with accidents that happen on a farm – to children, adults and the elderly – and we are fully aware of the shock that a child farm accident creates for the child´s parents. Therefore, you will find us sympathetic and understanding of the emotional trauma that you yourself have just been through.
We will ask you to explain to us the circumstances surrounding your child´s accident, what injuries they sustained and what medical treatment they received. We will also ask you to tell us where you believe the farmer was negligent in allowing the accident to happen and what measures you feel could have been taken to prevent it.
Wherever possible, we will make a preliminary assessment of your claim for child farm accident compensation and advise you if there is a case which is worth your while to pursue, and, if so, how long your claim would take to process.
If there are any elements of our advice that you are not completely clear about, or if you have any questions on topics that we do not cover during the course of our conversation, please do not hesitate to ask us to clarify any issues you are uncertain about.
We tend to conclude each call to our free advice line with a summary of what we have discussed and a list of options which are available to you. These are tailored to your own personal circumstances and you are under no obligation to act on our suggestions- they are simply there as guidelines for you.
After a child farm accident, it is in your best interests to call us as soon as possible. Memories of witnesses can fade and the elements can remove evidence of the accident. Our freephone service is open between the hours of 8.00am and 10.00pm every day, and if you would rather that we called you, kindly complete your details in the contact form below and one of our professional and dedicated team will be back in touch soon.