The Personal Injuries Assessment Board (PIAB), formerly known as the Injuries Board, is a statutory body which assesses how much damages is due to an injured person. It does not, however, make any decisions on liability. That means they do not decide who is at fault.
With the exception of medical negligence cases, all personal injury claims in Ireland must proceed through the PIAB before a claimant is entitled to issue legal proceedings.
The claimant can proceed with the PIAB without a Personal injury solicitor; but there are very good reasons why the claimant should engage a Personal injury solicitor before starting the PIAB process.
The claimant must submit a medical report setting out the extent of their injuries, the impact that the injuries have on the claimant and the future forecast in respect of recovery, long term effects.
The claimant must also submit proof of written notification to the proposed defendants indicating the claimant’s clear intention to seek damages as a result of the injuries suffered in the accident.
An application fee is also required, currently in the sum of €45 and an Application Form, Form A, must be completed accurately and submitted with the other documents.
Once PIAB receives the claimant’s application, the PIAB will write to you or your Personal injury solicitor acknowledging receipt of the claimant’s application. Receipts of any out-of-pocket expenses due to the injury may also be submitted along with any loss of earnings.
Statute of Limitations
A Personal injury claim must be submitted within two years from the date of the personal injury. In some cases this may be extended due to the date of knowledge.
Typical time length of claims process
The PIAB will then contact the alleged negligent party and ask them if they are willing to allow them to make an “assessment of value”. The alleged negligent party has 90 days to decide whether they consent to the assessment of value or not. If the alleged negligent party agrees, then the assessment proceeds. When the alleged negligent party consents to an assessment and the PIAB decide it is appropriate to proceed to an assessment, then an assessment will be made by the Injuries Board usually after a period of about nine to fifteen months from the initial application to the Board.
Once PIAB has finished its assessment it writes to both sides with the assessment amount. If both sides accept the assessment then PIAB issues an ‘Order to Pay’ and you should receive payment from the respondent soon thereafter. If the respondent says no, then PIAB plays no further part in the process and issues an Authorisation which allows you to issue court proceedings.
According to the PIAB annual report around 46% of assessments are rejected by either party. It is essential that you instruct a Personal Injury lawyer, who will properly prepare and evaluate your claim.