Cllr Gerry Warnock
The paying out of over €1.6m in compensation claims in Longford since the start of 2018 has been described as “shocking” and indicative of a wider “compo culture” nationwide.
Independent Cllr Gerry Warnock said the vast sums handed out to settle claims was having a detrimental effect in terms of reinvesting that money into projects at a local level.
He said local authorities need to look at the measures being implemented in the UK as a way of combatting the problem.
“It’s shocking that over €1.6m has been paid out in claims since 2018 and this is indicative of the compo culture we have here in Ireland,” he said.
“I do appreciate that efforts are being made nationally to deal with this but it’s another massive blow to public monies that could be better utilised in other areas.
“We really need to be going somewhere like the UK model for dealing with personal injury claims, where pay outs are more in keeping with defined criteria in a book of quantum.
“This would lead to more realistic compensation amounts reflective of the injury and help nullify huge legal and professional costs on top of huge payouts.”
The non party representative also said there was a broader perception which needed to be tackled.
“This crazy culture has a negative knock on for all of us in terms of higher insurance premiums and the likes,” he argued.
“Sure people might argue that paths and roads in Ireland are in rag order, but if you walk around Rome or Paris, or some of the resorts in Spain and Portugal then you’re eyes will be opened, and yet they haven’t a major issue in terms of public liability payouts to the extent we have here, simply because they don’t normalise or exploit a claims culture.”
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