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The Value of a Broken Leg: Mclnerney v. Limerick Corporation | Limerick Gazette Archives

The Value of a Broken Leg: Mclnerney v. Limerick Corporation

A case of negligence leading to a broken leg has been brought against the Limerick Corporation. The plaintiff, Mclnerney, argues that he sustained the injury due to an improperly maintained street in Limerick City. The defendants, Limerick Corporation, on the other hand, have sought to remit the action, stating that the plaintiff had failed to provide sufficient details regarding the accident.

In the case, Mr Charles F. Doyle, representing the defendant, highlighted that although the accident occurred on the 19th of October, no complaint was made until the 18th of the following month. The plaintiff’s solicitor had written stating that Mclnerney had been knocked down by a heap of mud on Cecil Street, subsequently breaking his thigh and losing his £75 per year job. However, the defendants argue that M’lnerney has since found new employment at the same wage level, having suffered no permanent injury.

Mr P. Lynch, representing the plaintiff, referenced an affidavit that he believed was sufficient to establish a cause of action, albeit not a perfect model. The defendants’ counsel argued that it was impossible in many cases to prove a prima facie case within the short timeframe of a trial, and much of the evidence would have to be gathered through discovery, interrogations, and cross-examination.

In his judgment, the Lord Chief Banna stated that although the affidavit presented by the plaintiff might not be an ideal model, he believed it was sufficient for the purpose. He concurred that it would be challenging to prove a prima facie case in various instances, considering the different aspects of evidence that needed to be gathered.

When assessing the value of McInerney’s broken leg, the Lord Chief Banna expressed that a jury would be likely to award a minimum of £50 for a broken thigh, potentially more, depending on the circumstances. However, given Mclnerney had found new employment at the same wage rate since the accident, it is debatable whether the award would be sustainable. The motion for remit was ultimately refused, with costs.

This case serves as an example of the complexities surrounding personal injury claims and the challenges that both parties face in establishing liability and determining the value of damages. The question of the value of a broken leg, or rather the value of any injury, often depends on the individual situation and any long-term impact that it may have on the plaintiff’s life. Considering the difficulties that can be encountered in proving a cause of action and establishing liability, this case underscores the importance of thorough investigation and gathering of evidence to ensure that an equitable outcome can be achieved for both parties involved.

Northants Evening Telegraph – Friday 18 April 1902