Compensation for an Accident with a Car Trailer: An Overview
For anyone who is thinking about pursuing a claim for injury compensation for an accident with a car trailer, it may come as no surprise that – according to statistics released by the Injuries Board – more than three-quarters of all applications for an assessment of personal injury* compensation are related to car accident claims. Considering the high car ownership levels in Ireland and limited public transport services – resulting in more people travelling by car, as passengers or drivers – these statistics are understandable.
A huge volume of car accident compensation claims are submitted to the Injuries board for assessment ; more than ten thousand each year – over twenty car accident compensation claims every day or nearly one request for assessment of compensation for car accident injuries every hour.
If you have been injured in a car trailer accident, or any other kind of vehicular car accident for which you were not at fault, it is highly recommended that you seek out expert legal advice for your individual situation to ensure that you are awarded the highest possible amount of compensation permitted.
Procedures to Follow After an Accident
Featured below is a checklist of what should be done after an accident in order to claim compensation for an accident with a car trailer or most other types of car accident compensation. You may have completed some of these procedures already, but there may be some you may have failed to accomplish because of the nature of the accident with a car trailer or the severity of your injury.
Health and Safety
Your health and safety must always take precedence over anything else if you have sustained an injury in a car trailer accident. An ambulance and the Gardai should be called to the scene immediately after such an accident, if you or anyone else has been badly hurt.
Even if your injuries were not deemed serious at the time of the accident, you should have attended the Accident and Emergency department of your closest hospital or, at the very least, made an appointment with your GP. Seeking medical attention immediately after the accident is not, however, only for the sake of your health.
Simply put, your compensation for car accident injuries claim could be contested by the negligent party’s insurance company (who will be handling the car trailer accident claim) if there is an unjustifiable gap between the date of the accident and the date on which your injuries were recorded in your medical history. Their reasoning may be that your injuries were not adequately serious to call for medical treatment at the time of the car accident and that they were, perhaps, caused by another means.
The Involvement of the Gardai
Any trailer accident should be reported to the Gardai at the first practical opportunity. In some scenarios, when it appears that no one has been seriously injured, the Gardai may not have called to the scene; however, any call made to them will have been recorded, and your solicitor could use this in evidence to support your injury claim for car trailer accident compensation.
The Gardai would have usually attended the scene of a serious accident where an ambulance had also been summoned. The Gardai will have gathered statements from those involved in the accident and other witness, where applicable, and a sketch of the accident location would have been made. It is possible that the Gardai may have referred the incident to the DPP for prosecution.
You are recommended to call to your local Garda station to give details of your car trailer accident if the Gardai did not attend the scene. A road traffic accident report book is held in every Garda station and you should insert the names of the various parties involved in the accident, along with their insurance details and registration numbers of the vehicles involved and together with the date, time and location of the accident. You should also make sure that you retain a copy of this report to give to your solicitor as part of your claim for car trailer injury compensation.
Formalities after a Traffic Accident
Following a car trailer accident, some formalities must be completed such as exchanging names, addresses and insurance details with the other driver(s), but no risks should be taken in order to do so. Injury claims for car trailer accident compensation require this information, and could be more complex without it, but even if you cannot obtain the information you need to make compensation for car accident claims in person, it can be recovered with the use of modern technology.
Sometimes, following the appropriate formalities may be impossible if the other parties sustained injuries, for example, or became aggressive or confrontational. It would have been advisable to personally record the registration numbers of the other parties in a situation such as this, and not to depend on the other parties involved to provide you with the correct information, as mistakes may be made due to confusion or shock – or in some cases, deliberate spite.
As most people in Ireland keep a mobile phone with them the majority of the time, you might have been able to take pictures of the accident scene, the registration numbers and the road conditions with a phone´s camera function – all of which may assist with supporting your claim for car trailer accident compensation if it proves impossible to process your claim via the Injuries Board.
Are You Eligible to Claim Compensation for Car Accident Injuries?
You are entitled to claims for compensation for an accident with a car trailer, a caravan or any other kind of car accident if it can be demonstrated that another road user – or the entity responsible for the upkeep of the road – was negligent in their behaviour, and that their recklessness was the cause of the injuries you sustained.
Car crash claims can also be made against the driver of a car who has been responsible for injuries sustained by a cyclist or pedestrian in a road accident, rf by a passenger injured in an accident caused by the lack of care of the driver in whose car he or she was travelling in. These scenarios have their own, separate articles which can be retrieved through the menu on the left of this page.
Compensation for Car Accident Injuries against an Unknown Driver
Compensation for an accident with a car trailer, or for other vehicular accidents in which the driver responsible for the accident has fled the scene should be made against Motor Insurers’ Bureau of Ireland (MIBI) – an entity founded by motor insurance companies to deliver compensation to injured parties when the driver to blame for the accident is either unknown or uninsured.
Before car crash claims can be made against an unknown driver, you should have reported to the Gardai so that they can try to find the vehicle’s owner by using roadside cameras or CCTV. Unless it can be proven that every effort has been made to find the negligent driver who caused the car accident, the MIBI will possibly not accept liability in a claim for car accident compensation.
Claim for Car Accident Compensation against the Council
Situations can sometimes arise in a compensation for accident with car trailer claim, when the accident in which you sustained injuries was not your fault, but the fault of the entity who has neglected responsibility for the upkeep of a road. Most cases would see the local council as the negligent party, although utility companies and even private homeowners have been known to be liable for creating a danger on the roads.
It should be highlighted that the “duty of care” of a council is not absolute. To explain, if a danger in the road – a pothole, for example – had appeared suddenly and been the cause of your accident, but the council could not have “reasonably” been expected to carry out repairs in the length of time available to them, it may be impossible for you to make a claim for car accident compensation.
It would be, therefore, in your best interest to seek counsel with a solicitor experienced in compensation for car injuries claims, after receiving medical attention for your injuries, if you have been injured in an accident with a car trailer for which the fault was not yours. ,
Process of Claiming for Compensation for an Accident with a Car Trailer
Most solicitors will advise that you submit an application for assessment to the Injuries Board Ireland – even if compensation for car accident injuries claims are not always resolved by them, and many a claim for car accident compensation is resolved between the solicitor who represents the injured party and the negligent driver’s insurers.
Solicitors will recommend attempting to negotiate a settlement for a compensation claim for a car accident with the negligent party’s insurers, as it can be the quickest and easiest way to settle car crash claims for the maximum amount of compensation allowed. However, the application for assessment to the Injuries Board should still be made, preferably simultaneously, in order to acquire an “Authorisation” to pursue your claim through the courts, if the negligent driver’s insurance company deny liability or if an acceptable settlement of compensation for car accident injuries cannot be negotiated.
What is the Amount of Compensation for Car Trailer Injuries am I Likely to Receive?
The amount of compensation for an accident with a car trailer you are eligible for depends on the severity and extent of your injuries; compared with your age, general state of health prior to the accident and, in some cases, your sex. Any quantifiable emotional trauma you have experienced can also be claimed for, as can the impact of the physical and emotional injuries on your quality of life.
You may additionally be reimbursed for any lost income or financial expenses which can be attributed directly to the trailer accident. Included in these damages could be; the cost of medical care, alternate travel arrangements if you can no longer drive or – where the injuries sustained are particularly severe – the expenses of restructuring your home to allow for wheelchair access and a lifetime of lost earning potential.
While the above mentioned situations reflect additional compensation for car accident injuries claims, one factor which may limit the amount of compensation you may receive is if your own lack of care contributed to the cause of the accident or severity of your injuries. For example, you would be attributed with a percentage responsibility if you were not wearing a seat belt and the time of your accident or if you neglected to receive medical treatment at the earliest opportunity possible, resulting in deterioration of your injury that could have been prevented. The percentage you would subsequently be attributed would then be reduced from your settlement for compensation for a car accident injury as a reflection of your contributory negligence.
Claims for Car Accident Compensation and Insurance Companies
Another situation in which the compensation you would be eligible for may be reduced is if you accept an offer of compensation from the insurance company representing the negligent party without first having your claim for car accident compensation evaluated by an expert solicitor. This type of offer is not unusual; when there is no doubt over the policyholder´s liability, insurance companies frequently approach the accident victim directly, shortly after the accident and when the victim would be at their most vulnerable, in order to offer a settlement which would normally be much lower than what the victim is actually entitled to.
Should you accept such an offer, and it proves to be an inadequate amount to cover medical expenses or support your family, you cannot return to the insurance company to ask for more. A situation like this can be avoided, however, if advice is sought from a solicitor who is experienced in personal injury* car crash claims.
Advice for Car Crash Claims
It would certainly be in your very best interested to speak with a solicitor at the earliest opportunity possible following the accident with a car trailer for which you wish to seek compensation for car accident injuries, but it is never too late to seek car crash claims advice. Most solicitors will give a free evaluation of claims for car accident compensation in an initial consultation and you will usually be reimbursed for any expenses related to making your claim for car crash compensation as part of your overall car crash claims settlement.
Car Trailer Accident Claims: A Summary
- Compensation for car accident injuries are the most common personal injury* claims in Ireland, due mostly to the high degree of car ownership combined with a limited public transport service.
- For a claim for car accident compensation to be successful, it must be demonstrated that your injury was sustained because of the negligence or lack of care of another road user or entity.
- Your health should take precedence over everything else and you should not start your pursuit of a claim for car trailer accident compensation until your injury has been treated and recorded by a medical practitioner.
- When viable, names, addresses and insurance details of the negligent driver should be gathered and remember that modern technology can assist with car trailer accident claims if you do not know the negligent driver’s identity.
- Claims for car accident compensation rely on a number of different elements and it is recommended that you discuss the amount of compensation you may be eligible for with an experienced solicitor.
No two cases are alike; a compensation for accident with car trailer claim would differ from a pedestrian’s claim for car accident compensation, for example. If you have recently been injured in a car accident that was not your fault and believe that you may have a potential compensation for car accident injuries claim, it is recommended that you discuss the points raised in this article with a solicitor at the first practical opportunity.