The lawyer defends the use of medical experts and says personal injury cases must be “fully presented”.

A prominent lawyer has defended the use of medical professionals in expert testimonies, saying he has a responsibility to fully present his clients’ cases.

Yesterday a High Court judge criticized the “unreasonable practice” by solicitors of referring clients to medics as he dismissed two personal injury claims after a minor “tip”.

Judge Michael Twomey also criticized the excessive use of expert testimony in the case, saying “there were clearly no medical reasons” for an attorney to refer one of the plaintiffs to a psychiatric counselor “because the attorney is not a family doctor.”

“18 different professionals (lawyers, doctors, engineers) were engaged, at no doubt substantial costs, to assist and defend against two personal injury lawsuits of up to €60,000 – all as a result of a tip-off in stationary traffic which resulted in no harm,” Justice Twomey said .

Plaintiffs Sarah Cahill and Rachel O’Riordan both made claims following the 2018 Clonmel, Co. Tipperary incident.

Ms Cahill was represented by Cian O’Carroll of Cian O’Carroll Solicitors. Following yesterday’s decision, Mr O’Carroll said so Irish Independent that he and his colleagues were “shaken by the severity of the verdict”.

“It would be quite common for a lawyer to ask doctors of different specialties to give an informed and independent opinion,” he said.

“I believe that I have a duty to ensure that all aspects of my client’s injury are properly documented and failure to do so would constitute an issue of professional negligence.”

Speaking on Newstalk pat kenny show, Mr O’Carroll doubled down on his comments, saying he could not “look his client in the eye” and say her case was being “half-represented”.

“Before you appear in court on the day with your case, you have to do your work for your clients. The insurance company, and I don’t blame them, they’re going to take advantage and say, ‘No, we accept that report from Dr, or she’s here,'” he said.

“And if he or she can’t attend, you’re now at a massive disadvantage … Honestly, when you look your client in the eye on court day and say, ‘I’m very sorry, but your case is only half done now are presented because I have restricted the selection of medical experts to, for example, ‘your family doctor’, then you have not done a correct and appropriate professional job for your clients.

Mr O’Carroll said he knows doctors “like orthopedic consultants” “who would make themselves available to appear in court” if the hearing takes place in Dublin or Cork.

“Of course it works, because if you don’t get one of those doctors to examine your client and make an independent professional report on what’s wrong with them, then… get on with your case the day you need to, in court Do your job for your client and you can’t do it,” he added.

When asked whether there is a financial advantage for a lawyer if a personal injury claim goes to court, Mr O’Carroll said “you can’t calculate that”.

“Wrong, although that would add up, you can’t make it because you have to go to the accident department,” he said. The lawyer defends the use of medical experts and says personal injury cases must be “fully presented”.

Fry Electronics Team

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