If I have been involved in a motor vehicle accident, what potential benefits can I claim?

If you have been involved in a motor vehicle accident and suffered injury then any claim that you have will be determined under the Motor Accident Injuries Act 2017 (“the Act”). Unfortunately, this legislation was imposed upon us by the NSW Liberal Government in December 2017. It’s only purpose, as far as I can tell, is to enhance the profits of CTP insurers at the expense of the innocently injured motorist.

Under the Act an injured person is entitled to the following:

Statutory Benefit

Statutory benefits consist of weekly payments (partial wages), treatment and care expenses. You are entitled to claim statutory benefits for the first 26 weeks after the accident even if you were responsible for the accident.

Weekly Payment

If you suffer a loss of income because of the accident you will be able to claim 95% of the loss for the first 13 weeks after the accident. That is, the insurer will keep 5% of your wages. Then, from week 14 to week 26 you can claim 80% of your loss of income if unable to work at all or 85% of your loss of income if you have lost part of your earning capacity and only suffered a partial loss of wages. Again, the insurance company keeps a portion of your wages.

Treatment and Care Expenses

You are entitled to claim for reasonable and necessary treatment and care expenses. This will include GP consultations, specialist consultations, physiotherapy, medication and related expenses.

Minor Injuries

Before you reach week 26 after the motor vehicle accident, the CTP insurer will determine whether your injury is a “minor injury”. A minor injury is defined as a soft tissue injury or a minor psychological or psychiatric injury.

If your injury is not classified as a “minor injury” and you are not at fault in the accident, you may continue to receive weekly payments (partial wage loss) up to 156 weeks after the accident or 260 weeks after the accident if the degree of impairment resulting from the injuries sustained by you is in excess of 10%. You are also entitled to receive lifetime treatment and care expenses.

In addition to the continuing statutory benefits for medical treatment expenses you may be entitled to claim common law damages.

Common Law Damages

Common law damages allow you to claim lump sum compensation consisting of economic loss and non-economic loss

Economic Loss

Economic loss is the loss of earnings or income or profits from the date of the accident until your expected retirement age. A common law claim will allow you to claim far more by way of loss of income than what would otherwise be available under a statutory benefits claim. Once the common law claim is finalised you are not entitled to receive any further weekly income payments.

Non-Economic Loss

If the level of permanent impairment resulting from the injuries sustained is over 10% you are entitled to claim non-economic loss. This is compensation paid for “pain and suffering” and for your inability to lead a normal life.

Brydens Lawyers are the experts in prosecution of motor accident claims. For 50 years Brydens Lawyers has been recovering maximum compensation for injured motorists. For a free, no-risk assessment of whether you have any entitlements to claim compensation for injuries sustained in a motor vehicle accident, contact Brydens Lawyers today on 1800 848 848 or at brydens.com.au.

Strict time limits apply with respect to the making of a claim for injuries sustained in a motor vehicle accident. Contact Brydens Lawyers without delay.