Written Answers. - Personal Injuries Assessment Board.

John Bruton

Question:

78 Mr. J. Bruton asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment when legislation will be introduced to establish a personal injuries assessment board. [15292/02]

The measures to which the Deputy refers are contained in An Agreed Programme for Government, signed by Fianna Fáil and the Progressive Democrats and, as such, will be implemented during our term of office. The timescale for each will depend on how quickly it can be progressed.

With reference to the issue of establishing guidelines for damages for personal injuries, the courts service will set up a database of awards made by the courts in personal injury cases. My Department is examining how best a requirement that certain forms of action be supported by sworn affidavit might be imposed to create a liability in perjury for fraudulent claims. A ban on no-foal no-fee advertising by solicitors is provided for in section 4 of the Solicitors (Amendment) Act, 2002. This provision, along with the other provisions in the Act relating to advertising by solicitors, has yet to be commenced. The Law Society is preparing regulations which are necessary to give full effect to the provisions and the provisions will be commenced when these are ready. My priority is that this should happen as soon as possible.