Woman suing for failed cosmetic surgery faces bill
Maria Taylor Flynn, 54, of Firhouse, Co Dublin, sued Advanced
Cosmetic Surgery Ltd (ACS) and surgeon Hassam Sulaiman after the
removal of fat left her with a ''bubble'' on her stomach. Taylor Flynn,
who borrowed 3,300 from the credit union to pay for the operation,
said she was now concerned about undressing and her appearance.
Mr Justice Iarflaith O'Neill, in a reserved judgment two weeks ago,
said that, having looked at 'before and after' photos, he did not
accept Taylor Flynn's evidence that her abdomen had been ''cosmetically
She had been offered another operation to rectify the ''bubble'', but was unwilling to undergo it.
O'Neill said Taylor Flynn was only entitled to recover damages from
ACS for breach of contract. He was not satisfied that the surgeon had
failed in his duty.
The judge awarded her general damages of 15,000, plus the original
3,300 cost of the liposuction procedure, a total of 18,300.
Cases are normally only taken in the High Court if they are worth more than 38,092.
Plaintiffs who bring low-value cases in the higher courts are penalised on costs.
The 1991 Courts Act says that a plaintiff who is awarded damages of
less than 19,046 (IR£15,000) in a High Court action cannot recover
more in legal costs than the total award.
This means that Taylor Flynn's legal bill, payable by ACS, will be
capped at 18,300. It's understood that, in pre-trial negotiations, her
legal team was seeking costs of 50,000.
The cost of the two-day hearing could well have exceeded that, as it involved senior counsel, junior counsel and a solicitor.
According to one legal expert, the case could leave Taylor Flynn out of pocket by up to 20,000.