Thursday 19 September 2019

TD Alan Farrell claimed €880 worth of car repairs after minor collision - but later dropped case

  • 'Liability for the accident was admitted. I have no further comment' - Fine Gael TD says
  • Invoice shows repairs carried out amounted to €882 - including €600 for labour costs
Alan Farrell TD with his dog Holly. Photo: Steve Humphreys
Alan Farrell TD with his dog Holly. Photo: Steve Humphreys
Amy Molloy

Amy Molloy

Fine Gael TD Alan Farrell alleged he would have to have more than €880 worth of repairs done to his car following a minor collision - but later dropped a claim for material damage after photos of the vehicle were shown in court.

Mr Farrell says he is "satisfied the matter is concluded" and will not be making any further comment following a segment on whiplash injuries on Prime Time last night.

Mr Farrell's Audi A6 following the accident Photo: RTÉ's Prime Time
Mr Farrell's Audi A6 following the accident Photo: RTÉ's Prime Time
Alan Farrell's Audi A6 following the collision Photo: RTÉ's Prime Time

Pictures of his vehicle after the collision and an invoice estimating the cost of repairs were shown on the RTÉ programme.

The Dublin TD alleged he suffered a whiplash injury for up to 18 months following the accident which happened in Drumcondra, north Dublin in April 2015.

Photo: RTÉ Prime Time
Photo: RTÉ Prime Time

He brought a personal injuries claim for up to €15,000 against Hertz Rent-A-Car after the collision with one of its vehicles.

The driver of the Hertz vehicle had been inching forward and panicked when a spider fell on to her arm.

Photo: RTÉ Prime Time
Photo: RTÉ Prime Time

The van she was driving subsequently rolled into the back of Mr Farrell's Audi A6 at a speed of around 5mph, Dublin District Court heard.

Deputy Farrell said he suffered pain and stiffness afterwards, having to curtail activities like running as a result.

He submitted an invoice quoting for repairs to his vehicle of €882.84 - which included €600 for labour costs and €156.23 for paint materials.

However, in court Mr Farrell later dropped his claim for this material damage - three years after the accident.

Mr Farrell was awarded €2,500 for his injuries, but Judge Coghlan said there was "little or no notation to back up a claim of significant whiplash".

"In the circumstances I consider it to be a very minor injury," he said.

When asked about his decision to drop the material damage claim, Mr Farrell told "My case was adjudicated on by a District Court judge. Liability for the accident was admitted and I am satisfied that the matter is concluded. I have no further comment."

Last week, Deputy Farrell came out in support of Fine Gael colleague Maria Bailey after she withdrew her personal injury claim against The Dean Hotel following a fall from a swing on a night out.

"Just because you hold public office shouldn't debar you from defending and vindicating your rights," he said.

The Dublin Fingal TD said he had "a great deal of sympathy for her personally and for her family" after she officially withdrew her claim last week.

The Irish Independent revealed how Ms Bailey ran a 10km race three weeks after she fell from the swing.

The politician lodged a personal injuries claim on the basis that she suffered injuries to her head, lower back and hip after the fall.

Court papers described her as a "keen runner prior to the accident but could not run at all for three months post-accident and has had to reduce her activities significantly since".

Social media posts show that on August 3, she ran 'The Bay 10k' in Dún Laoghaire. She recorded a time of 53 minutes and 56 seconds, according to the Racetimer website.

Fine Gael has since launched an internal probe into the compensation claim.

The party has hired senior counsel David Kennedy to inquire into "all the facts" surrounding the legal suit.

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