New Personal Injury Compensation Amount Guidelines – Updated 2021

Injury Law Update – New Personal Injuries Compensation Awards in Ireland


Injruy Courts Scene

The Personal Injuries Assessment Board (PIAB) is the independent statutory body which assesses personal injury claims in Ireland.  From the commencement date of 24 April 2021 PIAB will now assess personal injury claims in line with new Personal Injuries Guidelines for financial compensation in personal injury claims.


General Damages

The new Personal Injuries Guidelines deal with a wide range of injuries in terms of general damages which are the amounts awarded for pain and suffering in relation to an injury where someone else is at fault.


Special Damages

The new Personal Injury Guidelines do not change special damages, which are costs like medical or travel expenses or compensation for loss of wages as a result of an accident or injury that can be recovered from an insurer or the Respondent to a claim.


I have had an accident, what does this mean for my claim?

The guidelines are a new set of financial compensation guidelines that will replace the Book of Quantum in all personal injury claims.  The new Personal Injuries Guidelines must be used by PIAB and the Courts in awarding compensation if a person successfully pursues a personal injury claim.  As PIAB and the Courts will consistently award damages in line with the new guidelines, it should reduce the likelihood for claims to go to the lengthy litigation process and resolve claims quicker and easier.


Can I refuse my PIAB offer of compensation and go to Court?

Yes, a claimant who does not wish to accept a PIAB offer of compensation under the Personal Injuries Guidelines can decide to go to court and that option is still available to a claimant.  PIAB will issue an Authorisation that allows a claimant take a Personal Injuries action before the Courts.

The new Personal Injury Guidelines do not change the law and Judges are still required to assess damages that are fair and reasonable in individual cases.

While the courts will retain independence and discretion when awarding general damages, it will be mandatory for Judges to assess damages having regard to the new guidelines and a Judge will have to outline their reasons for any departure from the guidelines.


Why have the Personal Injuries Compensation Awards been updated?

These new Personal Injuries Guidelines have been introduced as part of measures to reform the insurance sector and bring down the cost of insurance for consumers and businesses.  This is because the cost of personal injury claims has been found to be a significant part of the overall cost of providing insurance cover.  The purpose of the Personal Injuries Guidelines is to ensure consistent financial guidelines which are followed when awarding compensation that will provide clarity for the insurer and the insured.

How will my compensation be assessed under the new Personal Injury Guidelines?

As the Personal Injury Guidelines have replaced the Book of Quantum, the new guidelines have set out a ranking system to determine the level(s) of injury into 4 separate categories:

      • Minor
      • Moderate
      • Serious
      • Severe

Each level has various factors which will be taken into consideration and in turn the applicable award of compensation will be offered.

The guidelines have set out a list of considerations that will impact the category of damage and the level of award, to include:

      • The age of the claimant;
      • The interference with quality of life and/or education;
      • Whether medical assistance has been sought;
      • The likely success of medical treatment;
      • Prognosis, to include any future vulnerability;
      • The impact on work and/or interpersonal relationships;
      • The extent and/or nature of any associated physical injuries;


New Levels of Compensation Awards under the Personal Injuries Guidelines

The most significant departure from the Book of Quantum is in respect of the level of damages for “Soft Tissue” injuries and “Minor” injuries or where a full recovery has been made.  This is illustrated by the following comparisons in respect of Neck Injuries, Back Injuries and Wrist Injuries, taken from the Book of Quantum and compared to the new PIAB Guidelines.


New Award of General Damages for Neck injuries / Whiplash


Level of Damages Book of Quantum New PIAB Guidelines
Minor €15,700 – €19,400 €500 – €12,000
Moderate €20,400 – €30,200 €12,000 – €23,000
Serious €34,400 to €52,200 €70.000 –  €100,000
Severe €44,600 to €77,900 €100.000 –  €300,000


In claims involving whiplash injuries, if you refuse your PIAB offer of compensation and your claim goes to Court, the guidelines require a Judge to make findings of fact on the issues of:

  • Whether whiplash was sustained, and
  • If so, the nature and extent of the injury


New Award of General Damages for Back Injuries

Level of Damages Book of Quantum New PIAB Guidelines
Minor Up to €18,000 €500 – €12,000
Moderate €21,400 – €34,400 €20,000 – €35,000
Serious €32,100 – €55,700 €33,000 – €55,000
Severe €52,300 – €92,000 €50,000 – €140,000


New Award of General Damages for Wrist Injuries

Level of Damages Book of Quantum New PIAB Guidelines
Minor Up to €43,500 €500 – €18,000
Moderate €21,900 – €75,500 €20,000 – €40,000
Serious €54,200 – €70,100 €40,000 – €60,000
Severe €68,400 – €78,000 €60,000 – €80,000


The changes between the Book of Quantum and the new Personal Injuries Guidelines in terms of a reduction in general damages are most likely to affect the minor injuries category of damages that have made a substantial recovery.  The moderate to severe category will have less of a reduction on an assessment of financial compensation in certain cases of injury and this is reflected in the increased awards on offer as shown above in the moderate to severe category of injuries.

If you have suffered an injury please contact MB Solicitors here for clear and comprehensive advice on the award of financial compensation you may be entitled to under the new Personal Injuries Guidelines.

Please Note

*The level of severity of a claimants injuries and potential award of compensation will be assessed on the basis of a medical report where necessary and the above figures are not a definitive award of compensation for a claimants claim and are subject to change.