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cork street

Woman loses €60k damages claim over broken finger and lost nail

The law student was suing a shop in Dublin after her hand got caught in its door.

A 25-YEAR-OLD LAW student, who claimed she broke her left little finger and lost her nail when a “heavy” store door slammed on her hand, has lost a €60,000 damages claim in the Circuit Civil Court.

Judge Jaqueline Linnane said she was satisfied the entrance door at Polonez, Cork Street, Dublin, had not been defective and Laurentia Racu had been the author of her own misfortune.

Judge Linnane said Racu claimed that in November 2013 she used the handle on the store door to push it open, walked in and turned around to guide the door closed with her left hand.

Her finger was caught in the closing edge of the door, which her nail left hanging. She had later been taken by ambulance to St James’s Hospital where x-rays revealed a fracture in her finger.

Racu, with an address at The Mill, Riversquare, Dublin, claimed the door had been heavy and swung back in a “speedy” manner. She had been working as a hotel receptionist at the time and had been off work for one week.


The judge today said Racu had told in evidence she had been familiar with the store and had been concerned the door swung back. Racu said she had been afraid it would hit somebody, even though nobody had been behind her.

The judge said it was the defendant’s case that Racu had been hesitant when she entered the store and had been trying to remove earphones from her ears as she walked in.

The store denied the door had been altered when a joint engineers’ inspection took place last year and it claimed Racu had been inattentive and careless when her “unfortunate” accident happened.

Judge Linnane told Sarah Corcoran, for Mordern House Limited, which owns the store, the joint inspection had revealed no defect in the door.

The judge said it was very clear from the engineering evidence that the door had handles both on the outside and on the inside.

“If Ms Racu was so concerned about the door swinging back and hitting somebody, although there was no one behind her, she should have used the inside handle,” the judge said.

Judge Linnane dismissed Racu’s case and awarded legal costs against her.

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