Published 23 Jul 2015
Author: Gerard Malouf
It is an unfortunate circumstances when we are involved in a motor vehicle accident and even more significant if we have sustained injuries form that accident.
It is imperative that we understand that there are basic steps that need to be undertaken to ensure that your rights to claim compensation for the injuries you have sustained are protected.
If you have been injured in a motor vehicle accident in the ACT and if the accident is not your fault then you can claim compensation for the injury that you have sustained which is referred to as pain and suffering, your medical expenses, any wage loss you have sustained and medical expenses and future wage loss.
It is important therefore that you understand that there are significant time requirements that must be complied with. These are expressed in the steps below.
It is important to comply with these procedural requirements so as not to prejudice your rights to make a claim.
Am I entitled to claim for loss of wages or loss of my earning capacity?
Under the provisions of the Act, a claim can be made for financial hardship on the basis that you have not been able to return to work because of your injuries. The insurer may make this payment on a without prejudice basis and without any admission of liability. In the normal course however, to claim for economic loss/wage loss you must attend to the following:-
A claim for non economic loss (often referred to as general damages but colloquially known as pain and suffering). Should I see a lawyer?
Well the simple answer for that of course is yes. If you have a medical condition you see a Doctor. If you are involved in a motor vehicle accident, you need to see Specialist Lawyers who specialize in this area of work. Gerard Malouf & Partners is such a firm.
It is important however, that you see us and/or a lawyer generally within a short period of time. The lawyer must provide the insurer with notice of the claim within 1 month of first formally consulting and receiving instructions from the client.
In due course your Solicitor will also write to the insurer and request Reports from treating Doctors that they may have obtained and will definitely make representations in terms of claiming reimbursement of any expenses you have incurred.
There are time limits.
Yes it is important to ensure that the basic steps referred to above are adhered to. There are strict time limits that is, a claim must be made within 3 years from the date of the accident or 3 years from when the injuries are first recognized.
Court Proceedings must be commenced within 3 years and therefore, it is important to lodge the claim and the claim form as soon as possible. There are a number of insurers that deal with claims in the ACT but the predominant insurer is NRMA.
The following are preliminary important steps that you must comply with:-
The above is a very basic guide to assist you in working your way through the initial stages after you have been involved in a motor vehicle accident.
It is important to ensure that you contact Gerard Malouf & Partners to protect your entitlements and to make sure your claim is managed and dealt with in the appropriate manner so as to fairly claim all compensation that you are reasonably entitled to.