September 30, 2020
Sinn Féin welcomes report on capping damages in personal injury claims – Pearse Doherty TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Finance Pearse Doherty TD has welcomed the report on Capping Damages in Personal Injuries Actions, published by the Law Reform Commission today.

The Donegal TD welcomes the view of the Commission that the guidelines to be published by the Personal Injuries Guidelines Committee next month should be given time to be applied in practice before any alternatives are considered. 

This is in line with the views expressed by Sinn Féin in their submission to the Commission in March. 

Teachta Doherty said: 

“I welcome today’s report from the Law Reform Commission on the Capping of General Damages in Personal Injury Actions, which examined the constitutionality of capping general damages in personal injury cases. 

“The cost of insurance is crippling businesses throughout the State; in some cases threatening their very survival. 

“While a report from the Central Bank last year showed that the average cost of claims dropped by 2.5 percent in the motor insurance market from 2009 to 2018, there is no doubt that bringing greater certainty and consistency to the cost of claims is a vital part of reforming the insurance market to end the rip off for consumers. 

“In March Sinn Féin made its submission to the Commission during the consultation period, and we are pleased that the Commission has echoed a number of the recommendations and views expressed in that submission. 

“Today’s report considered four models for capping general damages. This included the implementation of Personal Injury Guidelines which are due to be published next month under the Judicial Council Act, which Sinn Féin facilitated. 

“The report concluded that two of these models are constitutionally permissible in principle. One of those is the outworkings of the Judicial Council Act and Personal Injury Guidelines to be published and implemented. 

“In our submission we stated that it was not possible to determine whether another model would be more effective in reducing the cost of claims than the work of the Judicial Council in setting its Guidelines until those Guidelines were published and implemented by the Courts. 

“Today the Law Reform Commission has echoed that view. 

“We now need to see the Personal Injury Guidelines published and implemented by the courts as soon as possible. 

“Insurance reform cannot wait.”

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