High Court proposes to strike out woman’s case against catering company due to prior €15,000 settlement

Judge held Anne Marie Corrigan compromised action against Aramark Ireland by agreeing to settle claim

The High Court proposes to strike out a kitchen operative’s personal injuries case against a catering company but refused to do the same for co-defendant Dublin City Council.

Mr Justice Anthony Barr held that Anne Marie Corrigan compromised her action against her former employer, Aramark Ireland, by agreeing to settle her claim in return for €15,000. The council was not a party to the agreement.

Ms Corrigan, of McKelvey Avenue, Finglas East, Dublin, was seeking damages for alleged repetitive strain injuries she claimed occurred while employed by Aramark Ireland at a premises owned by the council.

She claimed the alleged muscular injuries to her left arm, trapezius area and neck were caused by having to pull large and heavy trays from a defective dishwasher and from opening another dishwasher that was placed at an awkward height.


The allegations were denied by Aramark and the council.

They alleged the proceedings were an abuse of process or bound to fail.

The defendants said Ms Corrigan entered into a settlement agreement with Aramark in March 2016 whereby she agreed to compromise her claim in return for €15,000. The payment was made without any admission of liability.

They also alleged the Personal Injuries Assessment Board (PIAB) did not authorise her to claim for injuries that allegedly occurred after August 2012.

The judge said Aramark outlined how Ms Corrigan initially refused to accept the €15,000 offer, indicating she would only settle for €60,000. Aramark was not willing to meet this counter proposal, and Mr Corrigan later accepted the earlier offer.

Mr Justice Barr accepted the evidence that Ms Corrigan was advised to obtain legal advice in advance of signing the settlement agreement but chose not to do so.

He did not believe there was any substance to Ms Corrigan’s “vague assertion” that she was coerced into accepting the settlement offer because the defendants allegedly did not meaningfully engage with the process before PIAB

The judge was satisfied from the evidence provided by Aramark that Ms Corrigan was not coerced or unduly influenced into entering into the agreement. She was the one who initially approached Aramark with a view to attempting to settle her claim, he said.

He held that Ms Corrigan compromised her action against Aramark by virtue of the agreement. He also ruled that Piab’s authorisation does not entitle her to claim for injuries that manifested before August 2012.

Ellen O'Riordan

Ellen O'Riordan

Ellen O'Riordan is an Irish Times reporter