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The MIBI – Questions & Answers
- What is the MIBI?
- This is an acronym for the Motor Insurers Bureau of Ireland.
- What does it do?
- The State is obliged by the European Union Motor Insurance Directive 2009/103 to have a system for compensating the victims of uninsured motorists who have sustained personal injuries. This directive is implemented in Ireland by legislation and by an agreement between the Minister for Transport and the MIBI (“the MIBI Agreement”).
- How is the MIBI structured?
- It is a not-for-profit private company limited by guarantee. All insurance companies authorised to issue motor insurance policies in Ireland must be members of the MIBI. All these companies are bound to contribute to a fund required to discharge MIBI claims each year.
- What is the precise obligation of the MIBI?
- The obligation of the MIBI in the case of an identified driver is to pay a judgement obtained against that driver when uninsured which judgement remains unsatisfied within 28 days. In other words, the case proceeds against the identified but uninsured driver and a judgement against the driver must be paid by the MIBI. Where the driver is untraced, the MIBI will be the defendant in your case.
- How do I make a claim if I sustain personal injuries due to the negligence of an uninsured driver?
- The MIBI Agreement deals with this by allowing the injured party to apply to the MIBI for compensation. First of all, the personally injured party must apply to the Personal Injuries Assessment Board (“PIAB”). Where the MIBI offers compensation that is unacceptable to the plaintiff then PIAB will issue an “authorisation” allowing you to proceed with the claim through the Courts.
- What happens if I sustain personal injuries through the negligence of a driver who had insurance but whose insurer is insolvent?
- The Irish Court of Appeal has held that the MIBI Agreement was intended to cover such a situation and in such circumstances therefore the MIBI would be obliged to pay the compensation awarded to you against the driver.
- What happens where the driver of the vehicle who caused my personal injuries is untraced?
- This is also covered by the MIBI Agreement but strict time limits do apply to the obligation to issue proceedings. Thus it is very important to obtain skilled legal advice as early as possible subsequent to your accident.
- What happens if my personal injuries were caused by an uninsured driver – not by the negligent driving of the car – but as a result of the vehicle being used as a weapon?
- In a very recent case of Mongan -v- Mongan and the MIBI which was decided earlier this year, i.e. 2020, the High Court decided that the MIBI was liable for injuries caused in such circumstances as a result of an assault and battery where the vehicle was used as a weapon against the plaintiff who sustained serious personal injuries. The High Court made it clear that people should be and will be protected should they find themselves personally injured and victim of assault and battery where a motor vehicle is used as a weapon.
- What happens if there is uncertainty as to liability between two uninsured defendants?
- This is a very good question and can often give rise to difficult legal problems. The short answer to your question is to seek legal advice at a very early stage from an experienced personal injuries solicitor who will guide you through the numerous pitfalls and legal complexities associated with such a set of circumstances.
For further information and advice in relation to “Personal Injuries – The MIBI”, please contact Daragh Burke, partner, Amorys Solicitors firstname.lastname@example.org, telephone 01 213 5940 or your usual contact at Amorys.