Clohessy Minihane Solicitors
Welcome to our team at Clohessy Minihane Solicitors. We advise and represent clients in personal injury claims where a person suffers an injury or injuries and losses as a result of an accident such as a road traffic accident, an accident in a public place or an accident at work. Feel free to contact us for a consultation where we will advise you of the steps which you should take to protect your interests.
Personal Injury Team
CATHAL MINIHANE - LITIGATION PARTNER
Cathal Minihane is the litigation partner in Clohessy Minihane solicitors. After graduating from the University of Limerick with a BA in Law and Accounting in 1998 Cathal qualified as a solicitor from the Law Society of Ireland in 2002. In 2008 he was awarded a Master of laws by NUI Galway. He is also admitted to the role of Solicitors in England and Wales.
Cathal specialises in personal injury cases. He has significant experience and success in personal injury claims and medical negligence cases. He represents clients who have been injured in road traffic accidents, who have been injured in the workplace or a public place or who have been harmed by negligent medical practice. He has a record of achieving excellent outcomes for his clients.
Outside of work Cathal has a keen interest in sport, in particular, hurling, gaelic football and rugby. He is a lifelong member of the Na Piarsaigh GAA Club in Limerick City having played both hurling and Gaelic football. He also represented County Limerick in Gaelic football at minor, U21 and senior level. He combines his interest in law and the GAA in his role as Chairman of the Hearings Committee of the Limerick County Board. He also enjoys hiking and mountain climbing and reached the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro in 2017.
DES CLOHESSY - LITIGATION LEGAL EXECUTIVE
Des Clohessy is a fellowship member of the Institute of Irish Legal Executives since 1987. He is also a Supreme Court appointed Commissioner for Oaths since 1984.
Des specialises in personal injury litigation and has represented clients in personal injury litigation over the last 35 years. He has a wealth of experience in representing clients in courts at all levels throughout Ireland: District Court, Circuit Court and High Court. He puts his valuable experience to work for his clients in advising them on their personal injury case and in getting outstanding results for them.
When not advocating for his clients Des enjoys playing a round or two of golf at Castletroy Golf Club where he was Captian in 2002 and President in 2014. During a long and distinguished soccer career Des played for Summerville Rovers, Mungret F.C. and Aisling Annacotty F.C. He still enjoys attending the odd soccer match and is also a frequent visitor to Clifford Park to support Young Munsters rugby team.
- How do I know how much compensation I am entitled to?
The amount of compensation is dependent on the severity of the injury, the more serious the injury the higher the level of compensation. The Personal Injuries Assessment Board PIAB “Booklet of Quantum” outlines the various ranges of compensation for various different injuries. For example for a minor soft tissue muscular injury to the back where a substantial recovery has been made they recommend compensation of around €15,000.00. The Courts through various cases over the years have also set out guidelines on compensation in personal injury cases. Both PIAB and the courts when assessing compensation will refer to the medical reports prepared by your doctors and by the defendant’s doctors in assessing the appropriate level of compensation.
- What should I do if I think that I may have a personal injury case?
- You should seek immediate medical treatment for your injuries.
- You should write down the full details of the incident and take photographs of the location of the accident.
- You should contact us for an early consultation.
- You should keep receipts for all out of pocket expenese such as doctor's bills, medication expenses, physiotherapy, loss of earnings etc.
- Will I recover my ongoing medical expenses and loss of earnings?
You are entitled to recover all out of pocket expenses including all medical expenses and also any loss of earnings attributable to the accident. These items can be included in the claim for compensation.
- If it transpires, after the conclusion of my case, that my injuries are more serious than envisaged can I seek additional compensation?
No. When the case has concluded either by way of settlement or by a determination of the court it is in full and final settlement of all damages, losses and expenses. You cannot come back to the Injuries Board or to the Courts or to your solicitors at a subsequent date if your injuries transpire to be much more serious than envisaged. Therefore it is critically important that the case is not concluded until you and your doctors are satisfied with the prognosis in respect of your injuries. As such you have only one bite at the cherry.
- What is the Personal Injuries Assessment Board, PIAB?
The Personal Injuries Assessment Board, PIAB, also called the Injuries Board, is the state body which was set up under legislation to assess in the first instance every personal injury claim. The Personal Injuries Assessment Board is entitled to make an assessment of the compensation which should be payable in cases.
- What happens if PIAB does not make an assessment of my case?
Then you are entitled to institute court proceedings and have the courts assess your case.
- How long will my case take?
The Injuries Board attempt to assess every case within 9 months of the application being made. If the Injuries Board decline to make an assessment or if the assessment is not agreeable to both parties then the case proceeds to the court system. The court process can take anywhere from 12 months to a number of years dependent on the complexity of the case and the severity of the injuries.
- Will my case be taken in the Circuit Court or High Court?
This will be determined by the severity of the injuries and by the amount of compensation which you would be expected to recover. The maximum amount of compensation which the Circuit Court can award is €60,000. There is no limit on the compensation which the High Court can award. Therefore more serious injuries are brought in the High Court.
- Who pays for the expenses and outlays of the case such as medical reports?
You are responsible for all expenses in bringing the case such as payments to doctors for medical reports. Our office will initially pay for the first medical report which is required to commence the case in the Injuries Board. These reports normally cost anywhere between €250.00 and €400.00. We will also pay the Injuries Board application fee of €45.00. When the case is finalised these expenses and outlays are repayable to us by you.
- Who is responsible for my legal costs?
You are responsible for your legal costs. At the outset of the case we will write to you giving you an estimate of your legal costs.
- How long do I have to commence my case?
The Statute of Limitations sets out different time limits for different types of legal cases. Generally one must commence a personal injury case within 2 years of the accident or injury. There are various exceptions to this general rule and you should contact us immediately to discuss whether you have an actionable case. You should not delay or wait until the end of the 2 year period as this may adversely affect your case. Beyond 2 years the law will generally prohibit you from bringing a case. The best advice is to avoid delay and to contact us immediately for a consultation.