CAR ACCIDENT INJURY COMPENSATION

Car accidents are traumatic events. The physical and psychological scars can be permanent with lifelong impacts. Chances are that you’ll require significant rehabilitation and care in order to recover from your injuries. Advantage Legal are expert car accident compensation lawyers who will put you first. We provide expert advice, support when you need it and work hard to make sure that you receive maximum compensation for your injuries.

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Car Accident Compensation should be all about You

The legalities surrounding car accident compensation can be complicated. The Advantage Legal team have decades of experience dealing with car accident injury compensation claims in NSW. You can trust that our senior lawyers will provide you with expert advice and personal support when you need it throughout the life of your claim. Being contactable when you need us is just one of the benefits of being a client of Advantage Legal. We’ll make sure that you’re treated like a person, not a file on a shelf. Your compensation claim will be all about you. We’ll prepare a strategic plan for you. Your claim will be tailored for you. Your questions will be answered based on your particular circumstances. We’ll make sure you are supported through your rehabilitation and recovery, and you’ll receive maximum compensation, no-win, no-fee.

Book a free initial consultation with a senior lawyer now.

It’s Your Claim - Get Advice Your Way

Did you know that you can receive a confidential advice regarding your NSW car accident injury compensation claim from Advantage Legal absolutely free? Simply make an make an appointment using our online booking system or get in touch by leaving us an enquiry and one of our team will get in contact with you. Alternatively, if you’d like to know more information about your rights and entitlements before speaking with a lawyer, you can use our free online claim advice tool.

Car Accident Injury Frequently Asked Questions

We understand that being injured in a car accident can be stressful. Your life has been turned upside down and its not clear how long your recovery will take. You’ve never been injured in a car accident before, but you think you have compensation rights through the greenslip insurer. Sound about right?

We’ve put together some of the most frequently asked questions that we receive from clients about the compensation process and their rights and entitlements to help you get a better understanding of what lies ahead. Its important to remember however that this information is not unique to your personal circumstances, so cannot be relied upon as legal advice.It also only relates to car accidents which occurred on or after 1 December 2017 in NSW.

  • Depending on the circumstances of your accident, call the Police, Ambulance or Fire Brigade to request emergency assistance.
  • Make sure the accident scene is safe. Where possible, prevent further accidents from occurring by alerting oncoming traffic with hazard lights.
  • Before moving the vehicles involved in the crash, take photos of the scene from different angles. If you can’t take photos, take a video.
  • Request the details of the other vehicle involved in the crash. You’ll need the registration details, the make, model, colour and type of vehicle.
  • Get the details of the other driver involved in the crash. Where possible take a photo of their drivers licence. You should also request the drivers full name, address, phone number and details of their CTP green slip insurer.
  • Before you can make a car accident injury claim you’ll need to report the accident to the Police and obtain an event number. If the Police attended the scene or the hospital where you were treated, they will issue you an event number as the incident has technically been reported. If however the Police did not attend, you’ll need to either drop into your local Police station or call the Police Assistance Line within 28 days of the accident to report what happened and to obtain an event number.
  • Request that your General Practitioner or the hospital where you were treated complete a ‘Certificate of Fitness’ for you. A Certificate of Fitness is a medical certificate that you’ll need when it comes time to lodge your CTP claim form (known as an Application for Personal Injury Benefits).
  • Call Advantage Legal or jump online and book a free consultation with one of our senior lawyers . We’ll provide you with a confidential advice that outlines your rights and entitlements and double check that your medical certificate and claim form have been completed correctly before it is submitted to the CTP insurer.

Time limits apply to lodge a car injury compensation claim form in NSW. The claim form is known as an ‘Application for Personal Injury Benefits’. You’ll need to submit this form to the CTP insurer who you allege to be at-fault for your accident within 28 days. If you miss this deadline, the CTP insurer will not back pay your wages to the date of the accident.

Sometimes, due to the severity of your injuries or simply due to lack of knowledge, the initial 28-day deadline may lapse. Don’t stress, you have up to three months from the date of your accident to lodge the Application for Personal Injury Benefits on the relevant CTP insurer. It just means that the insurer only has to start paying your lost wages from the date they receive the claim instead of back dated to the date of the accident.

If you’ve been seriously injured, you may also be entitled to lodge an Application for Damages Under Common Law. This claim is also known as a lump sum compensation claim or CTP damages claim. There are a number of time limitations that apply to CTP damages claims, however the most critical to be aware of is the three year limitation date. This means that you must commence legal proceedings in Court or in the NSW Personal Injury Commission if you are unable to resolve your claim with the CTP insurer within 3 years of the date of your accident.

Lodging a car accident injury compensation claim can be a complicated process, particularly if this is your first attempt. Immediately following the accident, you’ll need to complete:

    • An Application for Personal Injury Benefits; and
    • A Certificate of Fitness filled in by your General Practitioner

If you have sustained serious injuries and have incurred financial and other losses, you’ll also need to complete:

    • An Application for Damages Under Common Law

You can download these documents at www.sira.nsw.gov.au

We recommend that you obtain legal advice from Advantage Legal before sending any of these documents to the CTP insurer responsible for your claim. It is common for injured people and General Practitioners to make simple errors which can cost you tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars. Our team will review the documents and make sure that everything is accurate based on your personal circumstances.

A specified medical certificate must accompany the Application for Personal Injury Benefits in order to lodge a car accident injury compensation claim in NSW. The medical certificate is known as a ‘Certificate of Fitness’ and can be downloaded at www.sira.nsw.gov.au 

The NSW motor accident injury compensation scheme has been designed to assist people with minor injuries to return to work promptly after their accident and to compensate people who have been more seriously injured. The three most common scenarios that are encountered in the NSW motor accident compensation scheme are below:

    • At-Fault or Mostly At-Fault – If you were mostly at-fault or entirely at-fault for the car accident, you are entitled to claim up to 26 weeks of statutory benefits from the CTP insurer. This includes treatment, home and personal care and partial income replacement. This claim should be lodged with the CTP insurer of the vehicle that was responsible for the accident.

    • Minor Injuries but Not At-Fault – If you sustained a ‘minor injury’ such as bruising or soft tissue strain, but were not at-fault for the accident, you are entitled to claim up to 26 weeks of statutory benefits including treatment, home and personal care and partial income replacement. The term ‘minor injury’ has been defined in motor accident legislation and is not reflective of your actual injury severity. This claim should be lodged on the CTP insurer for the other vehicle involved in your accident (i.e. the at-fault vehicle). If the other vehicle was insured by an interstate insurer or uninsured entirely, you’ll need to lodge your claim form with the Nominal Defendant.

    • Non-Minor Injuries and Not At-Fault – If you sustained an injury considered to be ‘not a minor injury’ and were also not at-fault for your accident, you may be entitled to claim:

        • Treatment
        • Home and personal care
        • Partial income replacement.
        • A lump sum for past and future income loss including superannuation
        • A lump sum for pain and suffering.

      This claim will usually be lodged with the vehicle you allege to be at-fault for your accident, however, there are a few exceptions to be aware of:

        • If the at-fault vehicle was unregistered, uninsured or both, you’ll need to lodge your Application for Personal Injury Benefits and Application for Damages Under Common Law with the nominal defendant (or the CTP insurer acting on behalf of the nominal defendant).
        • If the at-fault vehicle left the scene of the accident before you were able to obtain the relevant registration details, your Application for Personal Injury Benefits and Application for Damages Under Common Law need to be lodged with the nominal defendant (or the CTP insurer acting on behalf of the nominal defendant).
        • If the at-fault vehicle was registered interstate, you’ll need to lodge the Application for Personal Injury Benefits with the nominal defendant and the Application for Damages Under Common Law (lump sum claim) on the interstate insurance company.

A ‘minor injury’ is a concept defined in the NSW Motor Accident Injuries Act 2017. Some people, including medical practitioners believe that this term reflects the severity or duration of an injury, which is not entirely correct. The legislative term ‘minor injury’ is a way of determining which people are entitled to statutory benefits and/or compensation for more than 26 weeks after an accident.

 

Practically, a minor injury can usually be identified as follows:

  • Physical Injuries – a soft tissue injury. General Practitioners regularly refer to this as ‘whiplash’ or as a ‘muscular strain’.
  • Psychological Injuries – a psychological diagnosis of adjustment disorder or acute stress disorder.

CTP insurers and General Practitioners regularly categorise injuries as ‘minor injuries’ incorrectly. This can be due to a lack of familiarity with the NSW CTP scheme, due to a failure to correctly consider the medical information before them or due to time pressures. Whatever the reason, an incorrect minor injury categorisation can cost you tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars.

If you’ve received a minor injury classification on a liability notice from your CTP insurer, you should seek legal advice urgently from a senior solicitor at Advantage Legal as you only have 28 days to lodge an internal review with the CTP insurer to dispute their decision.

Most decisions that a NSW CTP insurer makes on a motor accident injury claim which impact an injured person’s rights and entitlements are reviewable in the Personal Injury Commission. The CTP insurer is required to provide you with notice of their decision in writing. You may request an internal review of that decision within 28 days. Once reviewed, if the CTP insurer maintains or alters their initial decision and you still disagree with their position, you are then permitted to lodge a dispute with the NSW Personal Injury Commission.

The dispute resolution process in the NSW motor accident compensation scheme can be long and complex. It can also be particularly stressful on injured people who are unfamiliar with the requirements and formalities of the process. If you would like an experienced team of experts to manage your dispute, get in touch with Advantage Legal. Our initial consultation is free and we’ll provide you with a confidential advice, so you know where you stand.    

If you were injured in motor accident, sustained an injury which is classified as ‘not a minor injury’ (a legislative definition) and were not at-fault for the accident, you may be entitled to lump sum compensation.

At Advantage Legal, we don’t use generic claim calculators to estimate compensation entitlements. This is because we believe that a compensation claim should be all about you. The smallest detail in your personal circumstances can result in tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars in extra compensation. Factors such as your age, injury type and severity, your pre-injury earnings, how long you were absent from work, your plans for future employment and whether you are entitled to claim pain and suffering all impact how much your claim is worth.

Our lawyers have the knowledge and experience to maximise your compensation pay out. If you’re ready to be represented by a team of senior lawyers who put you and your claim first, get in touch with Advantage Legal and receive a free initial consultation and advice.

A lump sum compensation claim arising from a motor accident in NSW is known as an Application for Damages Under Common Law. Depending on your personal circumstances and the time restrictions in the motor accident compensation legislation which limit when injury claims can resolve, a claim usually takes between 2 to 3 years from the date of the accident.

Other factors which can impact the duration of a lump sum compensation claim include the CTP insurer’s attitude towards your injury severity and settlement negotiations, whether you require surgery, the extent of your post-surgery rehabilitation and delays in the dispute resolution process as a consequence of the global pandemic.

In NSW, if you sustained an injury which is classified as ‘not a minor injury’ and were not at-fault for the motor accident, you are entitled to pursue a car accident injury damages claim. This claim is known as an Application for Damages Under Common Law. In most circumstances, a damages claim involves:

  • Engaging a lawyer.
  • Identifying the CTP insurer for the at-fault driver and lodging a claim form with them.
  • Obtaining factual, medical and economic loss evidence in support of your claim.
  • Being examined by a number of medico-legal experts to determine the extent of your injuries.
  • Having any medical disputes resolved by the Personal Injury Commission.
  • Attempting to resolve the claim with the CTP insurer at a settlement conference.
  • If settlement is unachievable, requesting the Personal Injury Commission or Court to resolve any disputes which remain between the insurer and you.

CTP insurers are well aware that injured people who do not engage a lawyer are largely unable to accurately assess their claim. This is part of the reason why insurance companies have whole teams of people dedicated to working directly with injured people.

The solicitors at Advantage Legal have worked for insurance companies. Our team knows how to maximise your compensation and to ensure that the CTP insurer adheres to the requirements of the motor accident compensation legislation. So whilst it is not technically a requirement to obtain a lawyer to represent you in your car accident injury damages claim, failing to do so could put you at a significant disadvantage and cost you tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Most lawyers will represent you on your car accident injury damages claim (known as an Application for Damages Under Common Law) on a no-win, no-fee billing arrangement. For more information on this, please see our FAQ ‘What does No-Win, No-Fee mean?'.

Beyond the No-Win, No-Fee billing arrangement, solicitors are entitled to charge you by any means you agree to that has not been prohibited in legislation. The most common billing arrangements are hourly rates, fixed fees or event/stage based fees. The details of the billing arrangement you enter into with your lawyer will be contained in a document usually called a ‘cost agreement and disclosure’. You’ll be asked to sign this document when you first consult a lawyer.

At Advantage Legal, we believe in being transparent with our clients at all times regarding our billing arrangements. You’ll only pay our professional fees and disbursements at the successful conclusion of your claim and we’ll give you an update on our professional fees whenever you request it. To top it off, our initial consultation is entirely free and we’ll never ask you for interim payments during your claim.

Contact the Advantage Legal team now for representation you can rely on.

Your personal circumstances will determine whether you are entitled to pursue a claim under any other statutory compensation scheme or against a third party/personal insurance policy. In addition to rights under the NSW motor accident compensation scheme, a person injured in a car accident may be entitled to compensation, benefits or entitlements through the following:

  • The NSW workers compensation scheme
  • Public liability insurance
  • Personal accident insurance
  • Income protection insurance

To obtain advice on your full compensation entitlements, contact a senior lawyer at Advantage Legal team for a free initial consultation and confidential advice.

Depending on your accident circumstances, you may be entitled to make claims under multiple statutory compensation schemes or personal/third party insurance policies. These include, but are not limited to:

 

  • The NSW motor accident compensation scheme
  • The workers compensation scheme
  • TPD insurance
  • Public liability insurance
  • Income protection insurance
  • Personal accident insurance

If you’d like advice on your full compensation entitlements, contact the Advantage Legal team for a free initial consultation and confidential advice.

For too long, we have seen injured people treated poorly in NSW by large law firms and insurance companies. At Advantage Legal, we believe that compensation is personal and requires a tailored approach. Our clients trust us to know them personally, be available when they need us and to get the best possible rehabilitation and compensation outcomes for them. We take this trust seriously.

Leigh Davidson –
Principal Solicitor​

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WHAT IS A MINOR INJURY?

If you’ve been injured in a motor vehicle accident on or after 1 December 2017 in NSW, you will inevitably have heard the term ‘minor injury’. You may be wondering what this means in the context of your particular claim and how it will impact your entitlement to compensation. This blog provides an overview of the concept of minor injury in the context of the NSW CTP scheme.

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