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Ireland Insurance payouts cap could go to referendum - Varadkar

11:31  12 december  2019
11:31  12 december  2019 Source:   independent.ie

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A REFERENDUM ON capping insurance payouts can ’t be ruled out in the future if reforms of the industry fail, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said today. He told the Dáil that a “huge issue” remains when it comes to reducing the cost of public liability insurance for business and voluntary organisations.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar suggested the idea of a referendum yesterday.

Leo Varadkar wearing a suit and tie: Taoiseach Leo Varadkar Photo: Frank McGrath © IRISH INDEPENDENT Taoiseach Leo Varadkar Photo: Frank McGrath

The Taoiseach has raised the prospect of holding a referendum to cap insurance payouts if the Government's reforms do not work.

Mr Varadkar raised the possibility at the Fine Gael parliamentary party meeting last night where TDs spoke out on the issue.

Dublin Bay-South deputy Kate O'Connell hit out at people taking unjustified personal injury claims. Ms O'Connell said "life is a contact sport" and sometimes people fall over and hurt themselves and it's nobody else's fault.

Ms O'Connell said TDs make laws that are being "pushed to the limits" by some professionals advising people on making claims. She said two-thirds of all compensation claims are more than €25,000, the average industrial wage after tax.

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The insurance company has met its obligation by paying the repair costs for the damages that it found. Your car insurance company shouldn’t take However, if you don’t own your car outright but instead have a loan or lease on it, then you aren’t totally in control of how your claim payout can be spent.

Your first thought, when you see the flashing lights of a cop car in the rearview mirror, is "Uh-oh.". Your second thought: "How much is my insurance going to go up for this?". Insurance .com’s new ticket calculator, below

The private Fine Gael discussion came just days after the Irish Independent exposed how some lawyers and GPs are fuelling compensation culture by actively encouraging patients to bring claims.

Mr Varadkar is said to have spoken of a referendum as a last resort if reforms, including possible future legislation, do not bring down the amount of court-awarded damages.

Fine Gael TDs and Senators were given a presentation by junior finance minister Michael D'Arcy, who has responsibility for the insurance sector.

Mr D'Arcy's presentation outlined the steps taken to date by the Government to implement reforms in the insurance sector, including a new committee set up under the Judicial Council Bill which is due to issue new guidelines on personal injuries awards next year.

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You can change this preference below. The ACT Law Society is up in arms over the Government's plan to limit claims from compulsory third party motor insurance .

Rules on what motor insurance you need, what to do if you're in an accident, insurance for driving abroad, penalties for uninsured vehicles and drivers. Even if the vehicle itself is insured , if you’re not correctly insured to drive it you could get penalised.

His presentation also noted one of the key achievements of the reforms has been increased co-ordination and co-operation between An Garda Síochána and the insurance industry with regard to tackling fraud.

Mr D'Arcy also outlined how the Law Reform Commission is undertaking a detailed analysis as to whether the government could establish "constitutionally sound" legislation to cap or limit the amount of damages a court may award.

Mr Varadkar has previously raised the prospect of a referendum in the context of bringing down the cost of public liability insurance for business and voluntary organisation.

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