Sports injuries are an unfortunate and sometimes unavoidable reality of being active. With that said, not all forms of injuries are created equal. When playing any active game, the player accepts some level of risk. This could be as simple as an injured shoulder from golf or being tackled hard in a game of rugby. As part of regular play, these wouldn’t be covered by sports injury claims in most cases.
Outside of regular play, however, there are also injuries for which sports injury compensation claims can be relied on. Such unexpected injuries can be expensive, and since we don’t accept this risk as a part of playing, having to cover their cost can be unpalatable.
Injuries can prevent us from working, or enjoying life as we used to, prohibiting regular life in a way that is financially and emotionally difficult. This is where legal claims come in, to help you cover costs and address injuries to get you back to full health.
What type of sports injuries could you claim for?
Sports injury compensation claims revolve around injuries outside of the purview of regular play. As we mentioned above, an injured shoulder from swinging in golf is an accepted risk.
On the other hand, twisting an ankle on the fairway thanks to an improperly maintained course is not considered a part of regular play. In the latter situation, you would be able to claim damages.
In other words, any form of outside influence or accident unrelated to agreed-upon gameplay could be open to sports injury claims. There could be a wide range of possible causes for injuries depending on the game, including:
- Poorly maintained equipment failing and causing harm
- Conduct by players outside of the established rules
- Defects in the area of play
- Instructors, umpires, or referees failing in their duties to prevent risks
- The wrong advice in training leading to an injury
Note that sports injury compensation claims don’t just apply to players, they can also be turned to by the audience in some circumstances. Ice hockey, for example, requires barriers to protect the spectators from flying pucks. If these barriers fail and a spectator was injured, they could also be eligible for a claim.
How much compensation can you claim for a sports injury?
This depends on the type of injury you sustain, and the effect the injury has on your life. Sports injury compensation claims involve two elements, general damages and special damages.
General damages are the part of a sports injury claim tied to the pain and suffering you’ve experienced, and your new inability to do what you once could. This is called a loss of amenity and can apply to both larger and smaller aspects of your life.
Not being able to clean your house or drive would be examples of what general damages apply to. Claims for these damages could be small for short-term injuries, or much larger if the injury takes longer to heal. These damages will have to be supported by medical evidence.
Special damages are parts of sports injury compensation claims related to the expenses you have taken on board to directly address the injury. These tend to revolve around medical expenses such as doctors’ costs, surgeries, and physical therapies. Payment for special claims should cover the entirely of what the injury has cost you, so be sure to keep all receipts as physical proof.
For more serious long-term or life-long injuries, sports injuries claims will be much larger. These will apply most often when a person loses ability or mobility or is unable to work/ takes a demotion to keep working.
How to make a sports injury claim with McGinley’s Solicitors
Here at McGinley’s Solicitors, we cover a wide range of injury claims including spinal and back injuries, road traffic accidents, and, of course, sports injury compensation claims. Established in 1988, our team of highly experienced solicitors specialise in personal injury claims for the people of Ireland.
If you require help for claims related to sports injuries or any of the other areas we cover, head over to our contact page for a case assessment, and we’ll let you know exactly what you can expect.
Sports Injuries FAQs
Does an injury have to be major for me to make a claim?
Not at all. Moderate and minor injuries can also be covered. Since there is considerable variation between claims, however, we’d recommend you speak to one of our specialists to gain an understanding of how this process can work.
Is there a time limit for claims?
Yes. Under the Civil Liberties and Courts Act 2004, claims must be made within two years of the date of the accident. While this gives you some time to formulate a plan, you should also note that it’s necessary to inform the person you hold responsible within one month of the accident taking place. It is best to do this in writing while keeping records, as this can affect course cases.
How long does it take for a payout?
This will depend on the specifics of the case, but the general turnaround is somewhere around seven to nine months. This is assuming that both parties accept the compensation number, where complications can extend potential payouts to longer periods.
What Information do I need to make a claim?
In a general sense, you should collect all the data you can, and let the solicitor decide what is needed. Good record keeping here would include:
- The name of the person or people you hold responsible
- Contact information of any witnesses (names, addresses, telephone numbers)
- Any costs of treatment with commensurate medical records
- Records of any payment reductions which occurred as a result of injury
- Photographs of the area where the injury occurred, including close-ups if possible
- Records of any authorities who have been aware of the injury