Girl Award €80k Car Passenger Compensation after Aunt Suffered Partial Seizure while Driving

car crash

2 February 2021

At the High Court a €80,000 car accident injury compensation settlement has been approved by the High Court for a girl who suffered with injuries following a crash that occurred when the driver of the car she was travelling in, her aunt, suffered a partial seizure.

As he was giving his approval for the car passenger compensation settlement, Justice Garrett Simons said that Caoimhe Coyle, of Glenhoe, Carrigart, Co. Donegal, aged seven had been strapped into the car at the time of the accident six years ago. He added that the case was “very unusual” given the circumstances involved.

There had been some legal discussion in relation to the liability in the case, the judge was informed. This was due to the fact that, while the child’s aunt Nora McHugh caused the accident in the physical sense, there was a point to be considered as to whether she held any legal liability due to the fact that medical evidence was presented that she experienced a partial seizure at the time and cannot be held responsible.

Legal representative for Caoimhe informed the judge that, while Ms McHugh may have a full defence to liability due to her medical condition, the plaintiff would have to overcome a “huge hurdle” concerning liability if the case went to a full trial setting.

Caoimhe, now 13 years of age, has made a satisfactory recovery from her injuries, including a pelvic injury described as moderate to severe, the judge was advised. In addition to this she had also sustained a soft tissue injury to her neck and suffered with anxiety due to the accident.

Caoimhe submitted the car passenger accident compensation action via her mother, Mary Ann Coyle, in relation to the accident. The legal action for car accident compensation came before the judge today through an application on behalf of the child to consider the settlement offer.

Justice Simmons informed the court that, due to the serious risk to the plaintiff in relation to proving liability if the matter went to trial, the settlement offer of €80,000, comprising approximately 75% of the full value of the compensation claim, was a very good one and he would give his approval for it.

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