2020 Car Accident Compensation Claims Guide NSW.
If you’ve been injured in a car accident in NSW, you might be entitled to claim compensation. This claims guide answers the most commonly-asked questions and includes legal advice, links to other articles and information on how to get help with car accident claims.
Can you get compensation for a car accident?
Yes, in NSW you can get car accident compensation by making a claim under the at-fault driver’s CTP insurance policy. A CTP insurance policy, also known as a greenslip, is compulsory for all vehicles in NSW, so if you’re injured in a car accident you’re entitled to claim for your injuries and losses.
For example, if you’ve been rear-ended by another car and you needed hospital treatment and time off work, you can claim car accident compensation for your hospital and treatment expenses and any income you’ve lost. If you’ve had a more serious injury, you may also be able to claim lump sum compensation for future lost earnings and for pain and suffering.
How do I claim injury compensation?
To make a car accident injury claim, you can either lodge your application directly through the SIRA online claim portal, or you can fill out an Application for Personal Injury Benefits form and submit it by email or post. SIRA (the State Insurance Regulatory Authority) manages the claim process, and car accident injury claims are processed by the CTP insurers.
To claim car accident injury compensation, you’ll need:
- Details of the accident, including the road and suburb and the time it occurred
- A police event number
- Details of your injuries
- Evidence of treatment you’ve received such as receipts and medical reports
- Details of your employment and income
For more information on car accident claims, here’s a step-by-step guide to lodging your claim and links to the SIRA claim portal and the application form.
What is the time limit for claiming compensation?
Car accident compensation claims must be made within 28 days to be eligible for income loss from the date of the accident. The final lodgment date is 3 months from the accident, although this can be extended in certain circumstances.
What are the common injuries in car accident injury claims?
According to the SIRA, the most common injury in car accident compensation claims in NSW is Whiplash. Whiplash is caused by a violent, sudden movement of the neck and head from the impact of the accident and results in neck pain that can be severe.
Back pain is also common in car accident claims. There are a number of injuries that can cause lower back pain after a car accident – here are some common examples, and you can read more in our car accident injuries guide:
- The discs of the spine may have sustained damage. This sort of pain can affect any part of the spine, but the lower back (lumbar spine) is particularly susceptible.
- Lumbar sprains (when the ligaments of the back are stretched or torn) can also be caused by car accidents because of the sudden trauma of the impact.
- Disc herniation occurs when the inner filling of the discs of the spine protrudes through the outer layer.
Other common injuries include:
- Cuts and bruises
- Brain and head injuries
- Fractures and broken bones
- Knee and shoulder trauma
- Psychological injuries
Settlements and Payouts
After car accident claims are submitted, the CTP insurers assess them. Within four weeks of submitting your claim you’ll receive a letter from the insurer stating:
- Whether it is accepting or denying your claim
- Whether your injuries are considered “minor” or “non-minor”
- Who was at fault in the accident
- What compensation you’re entitled to
If your claim is rejected and you disagree with the insurer’s decision, you can dispute the decision. It’s a good idea to get legal advice before you raise a dispute and you may be able to get your legal fees paid by the insurer. A specialist car accident injury lawyer can advise you on how to get the maximum car accident injury settlement.
Can I claim car accident compensation for pain and suffering?
If your injuries are more serious and you weren’t at fault in the accident, you might also be eligible to claim lump sum car accident compensation for pain and suffering and for future loss of earnings. These lump sum claims can be substantial, with many running into hundreds of thousands of dollars and some more than one million dollars. Click here for a comprehensive set of articles and making a lump sum claim.
If you have a serious injury, speak to a specialist car accident lawyer and find out if you’re eligible to claim a lump sum settlement.
What accident situations are covered?
Car accident injury compensation is available to drivers and passengers in cars and other vehicles such as trucks and taxis. It’s also available in the following situations:
- If you’ve been hit by a motor vehicle as a pedestrian, you can make a car accident injury claim under the driver’s CTP policy.
- Motorcycle and bicycle riders hit by vehicles can also claim against the at-fault vehicle’s CTP policy.
- Public transport accident injury claims are covered by the CTP scheme, including bus, train and ferry accidents.