Coping with an unexpected bereavement is deeply traumatic. If a loved one dies as a result of the negligence of another person or an institution there may be a case for a dependant to bring a fatal injury case for financial redress.

Here at S.T. O’Sullivan & Co Solicitors, we have represented clients whose family members have been fatally injured, and we understand the complexities of these cases. The emotional turmoil can be a crucial factor in whether or not you seek legal redress for a wrongful action that has resulted in a death, and we offer a sensitive approach that allows you to talk through your case and understand whether or not you may be able to bring a case forward in your situation.


A fatal injury claim usually includes several different categories*.  As a general rule claims must be made within two years of the death, although there are some exceptions to this rule.

Fatal injury claims may include the following categories:

  1.  Mental distress. If a person has died as a result of a wrongful action by an individual or institution, a dependent may suffer extreme mental distress and pain. By law, this can be compensated financially, and dependents can be awarded up to €35,000 collectively.
  2.  Financial loss. Financial loss suffered by a dependent is calculated with regard to the likely financial benefits that they would have received had the deceased not died. This can include loss of earnings and/or pension, and any loss of services that have a financial value, for example, babysitting, home repairs, doing work around the house if such work had been habitually done by the deceased.
  3.  Funeral expenses. The costs associated with the funeral may be included in a fatal injury claim, including the cost of funeral clothes and a headstone.
  4.  Post-traumatic stress/abnormal grief. A dependent may suffer nervous shock or an abnormal grief reaction if the deceased’s death is caused by negligence, and this may mean that the dependent is entitled to make an independent personal injury claim for themselves.


A dependent may be defined as:

  •  A spouse, civil partner, or someone who cohabited with the deceased for at least three years prior to death.
    •    Children, including those who have been adopted, step-children, or children whom the deceased has been in loco-parentis to.
    •    Parents, stepparents, grandparents and grandchildren.
    •    Brother and sisters including step brothers and sisters.
    •    A separated or divorced spouse may be entitled to claim financial redress in certain circumstances.

If you feel that you may be entitled to bring a case as a result of a fatal injury, it is important to consult with a solicitor experienced in this area of law.

At S.T. O’Sullivan & Co Solicitors, we have 35 years experience in dealing with claims of this type and are sensitive to the burden that such litigation places on families and loved ones .



S.T. O’Sullivan & Co Solicitors, 6, Bindon Street, Ennis, Co.Clare.

Telephone: 065 – 6820620. Email: info@stosullivan.ie

We guarantee to return calls within one business day.