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Personal Injury Claims Guide Victoria.

If you’ve been injured, you want to be able to completely focus on your recovery. However, the mental and physical stress, financial pressure, and uncertainty around making a claim for personal injury benefits can make this process much more difficult. This article explains everything you need to know about making a personal injury claim in Victoria, how a claim can help you recover, and how to get help from a specialised personal injury lawyer. This is your personal injury claims guide for Victoria.

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Personal injury claims in Victoria

There are three schemes for personal injury claims in Victoria, and what you’re able to claim depends on which area your injury falls under. The Acts are:

  1. The Workplace Injury Rehabilitation and Compensation Act
  2. The Transport Accident Act
  3. The Wrongs Act
The Workplace Injury Rehabilitation and Compensation Act

· Managed by WorkSafe Victoria and offers guidelines to managing workplace injury claims
· Protects you if you’re injured at work or in a situation caused by your job
The Transport Accident Act· Regulated by the Transport Accident Commission (TAC) and covers any injuries caused by a vehicle
· Includes if you’re a driver a driver, rider, passenger, or pedestrian either directly (like if you’re hit by) or indirectly (like witnessing a traumatic accident that causes you PTSD) by a transport accident
The Wrongs Act· Injuries that aren’t caused by work or a vehicle
· Includes recklessness or negligence which causes an injury
· Two main claims are: medical negligence, and public liability

If you’re not sure which type of claim you’re eligible for, or you don’t know where to start, having a personal injury lawyer on your side will give you the best chance of success. At Law Partners we win over 99% of our cases, and we’re specialists in Victorian personal injury claims. Get in touch with us today to find out how we can help you, or just to get some personalised advice about your claim – for free.

Personal injury claims in Victoria

How much can I get from a personal injury claim?

The amount of compensation you’ll receive will vary based on your injury, but payments can be significant. The final amount will depend on:

If your injuries are minor and you don’t have to take much time off work, the personal injury claims settlement is likely to be in the tens of thousands of dollars. For more serious injuries, like if you require surgery, long periods of time off work, or even being unable to return to full-time employment, personal injury compensation can be up to hundreds of thousands, or even millions, of dollars.

The final amount of compensation you receive will depend on the extent of your injuries and making sure that all your injuries are included in your claim. At Law Partners we specialise in the personal injury claims process, and we have extensive experience navigating every type of claim. We understand that every case is unique, and that’s why we’ll take the time to get to know you personally so that we can help you achieve maximum compensation.

By taking the time to get to know you, our lawyers can make a case based on every way that you’ve been impacted – even things you might not have thought about. Even one detail left out can mean you miss out on thousands of dollars of compensation that you’re entitled to.

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Do I qualify for a personal injury claim?

You’re likely to be eligible for a personal injury claim if you’re injured in any of these scenarios:

If you’re injured, making a claim can be the difference between financial relief or bearing all the costs of recovery by yourself. You don’t have to do it alone, and if you’re not sure if you qualify for a personal injury claim then it’s always best to check with a specialist.

If you’d like some advice about your situation then we can offer you expert advice specific to your claim, for free. Simply tell us a bit about your case in the form below or give us a call and speak to one of our specialist personal injury lawyers today.

What types of personal injuries qualify for compensation?

If you think you might qualify for compensation, being informed about everything you may be entitled to is the best way to start. This table offers an overview of who’s eligible to claim, based on specific situations. All claim types cover both physical and psychological injuries.

Claim typeDescription
Motor Vehicle Accident Injures
  • Includes injuries to drivers, passengers, cyclists and pedestrians, as well as public transport users
  • No-fault scheme to cover medical expenses, lost wages, and lump sum compensation for permanent injury
  • Common Law claim for pain and suffering and loss of earnings
  • Compensation is paid through the Victorian Transport Accident Commission (TAC) scheme
Workplace injuries
  • Includes employees and subcontractors injured at work or a work event
  • No-fault scheme to cover medical expenses, lost wages, and lump sum compensation for permanent injury
  • Common Law claim for pain and suffering and loss of earnings
  • Workers compensation is available through the WorkCover scheme and managed by WorkSafe Victoria. For more information, see our WorkCover claims guide.
Injuries in public places and buildings
  • Includes slips, trips and falls, injuries from falling objects, food poisoning and injuries from faulty equipment
  • Covered by the Wrongs Act. For more information, see our public liability claims guide.
Medical negligence
  • Including surgical mistakes, doctor and hospital negligence, birth injuries and defects, defective implants, misdiagnosis, and delayed diagnosis
  • Covered by the Wrongs Act

Personal injury claims Victoria – what can I claim for?

If you’re injured and eligible for compensation, there are lots of things you can claim for to get your recovery back on track. Your specific entitlements will vary based on your circumstances and the overall impact of your injury, but generally you’ll be entitled to:

There are additional lump sum payments that you may be eligible for in some cases, which include:

Lump sum payments can be substantial on top of assistance you’re already receiving, so you should look into everything you might be able to claim. A good personal injury lawyer will help you understand what you’re eligible for and make sure you don’t miss out on any entitlements.

The personal injury claims process

How do personal injury claims work?

If you’ve been injured, the personal injury claims process is designed to help you access financial compensation. The specific steps will vary based on claim type, but you’ll have to submit your application for personal injury benefits, and then the insurer will let you know their decision.

This table gives you an overview of the personal injury claims process:

Claim StageDescription
Claim assessmentYour personal injury lawyer will assess your situation and determine whether you have a valid injury claim, then provide you with advice on how to proceed. Part of this process is to identify the insurer.
Claim preparationThis includes gathering detailed evidence to back up your injury claim, including medical reports to show evidence of your injuries.
Claim settlementOnce your personal injury claim has been submitted to the insurer, if the insurer accepts your claim it will generally offer you a settlement payment. Your personal injury lawyer will advise you on how much you should accept.
Dispute resolution/ litigationIf the insurer denies your injury claim or you can’t come to a settlement agreement, you have the option to take the matter to court – this is known as litigation.

Is there a time limit for making a personal injury claim?

There are time limits to making a personal injury claim, though there are often exceptions, and our lawyers will always recommend speaking to a specialist before giving up.  This table gives an overview of the claim time limits.

Claim typeTime limit for personal injury claims
WorkCover claims
  • Claims should be submitted within 30 days of the injury occurring, or presenting, if it’s developed over time
  • The insurer (or agent) has 28 days from the date of receiving the claim to accept or reject liability and inform you of their decision
  • If you’re unhappy with the decision and want to lodge a dispute you have 60 days to refer your claim to the Workplace Injury Commission
  • You have six years from the injury to seek compensation through a Common Law claim
TAC claims
  • You have one year after the initial accident or injury to claim
  • The TAC will consider claims made outside this limit if it’s made within three years of the accident and there are reasonable grounds for delay
  • You have six years from the accident to seek compensation through a Common Law claim
Wrongs Act
  • You have three years to issue proceedings in court, either from when the injury occurred or from when you became aware of it
  • If you were under 18 at the time of the injury, then the time limit can be extended
  • There are some exceptions, like if there was a valid reason why you couldn’t bring the claim within the time frame, though 12 years is a hard limit

Personal injury claims payouts in Victoria

How are personal injury settlements calculated?

The settlement of your personal injury claim will depend on your individual situation, like how much time you’ve missed at work, whether you’re able to return to your original job or any suitable employment, how much your mobility is impacted, and other similar factors. Initially, when you lodge a claim for personal injury benefits for WorkCover and TAC, you’ll be able to access up to 95% of your wages, as well as treatment and medical costs.

If you’re making a claim for a lump sum, then the personal injury claims settlement process will factor in your individual needs, ability to earn a future income, and likelihood of further medical treatment. This will impact the final settlement amount that you’ll receive.

For more information, have a look at our compensation payout guide.

How much do you get for pain and suffering?

Pain and suffering claims are for a lump sum to compensate you for your non-economic losses, or the pain, stress, and difficulty that your injuries cause you. You’re eligible to claim pain and suffering if you have over 5% physical permanent impairment, or over 10% psychological permanent impairment for cases of medical negligence or public liability.  

The most important thing to know about a pain and suffering claim is that it’s entirely subjective, so your best chance of success is having a specialised lawyer on your side who can help you with every step of the process and allow you to achieve the best results.

*Victorian Government solicitor’s office

Are lump sum personal injury claims taxable in Victoria?

Personal injury claims are separate to your regular income, so if you do receive income support payments, or a lump sum claim, it won’t be taxed. This means you’ll receive the full amount, without having to factor in tax deductions.

Will my personal injury claim affect my Centrelink entitlements?

Centrelink payments are calculated based on your income and are subject to change when your income changes. If you were unable to work and received Centrelink before your income support payments started, and then start receiving income support payments worth 95% of your pre-injury earnings, the Centrelink payments would reduce or stop.

Making a successful personal injury claim

How can I win a personal injury claim?

The aim of the personal injury lawsuit process is to leave you in the same, or better, situation as you were in before your injury. While this isn’t always possible, accessing financial support is what allows many people to fully focus on recovery and get their lives back on track. A personal injury lawyer will give you the best advice about how to get the best outcome with your claim, but we’ve put together some simple advice to keep in mind as you navigate the personal injury claim settlement process.

Keep evidenceKeep as much evidence as you can from your accident. Photos, details of witnesses, contact details of any other people involved (for example, the other driver if you’ve had a collision).
Keep medical recordsKeep very thorough medical records – medical reports, receipts for all treatment and travel expenses to and from medical appointments.
Don’t rush into settlementDon’t accept an early settlement offer from an insurer. Your injuries could take time to stabilise and if you accept an early settlement offer you might not be fully compensated, especially if your injuries worsen or lead to other issues over time.
Get legal adviceTalk to a no win no fee lawyer who specialises in your claim type. You can submit your own claim without using a lawyer, but you’ll have a better chance of success and you’re likely to get a higher compensation payout with the right lawyer on your side.
Be detailedIf you proceed with a personal injury lawyer, tell them absolutely everything – don’t hold back. Remember that your injury could lead to other issues over time, and that will increase the amount of compensation you’re entitled to. Choose a lawyer who takes time to really get to know you and asks a lot of questions – it’s only by getting to know you personally that a lawyer can claim everything you’re entitled to.

What if my personal injury claim is denied?

If your claim is denied, it isn’t the end of the road. You can appeal any denied claim, or even an accepted claim if what you’ve been offered isn’t reasonable. If you haven’t spoken to a personal injury lawyer, now is the time to do so. They’ll be able to assist you with the dispute process, including gathering all relevant documents, recommending treating specialists familiar with the claim system, and bringing in depth knowledge and experience navigating the system to help you achieve the best results.

Navigating the personal injury claims and settlement process can be overwhelming but being confident and well informed will help make everything easier. Understanding what you may be entitled to, and which scheme is most appropriate for your claim, as well as following the advice in this article will give you a strong start for a successful claim. At Law Partners, we’re experts in personal injury claims in Victoria. If you have any questions or would like to find out how we can help you, get in touch with us today and speak to a lawyer who specialises in claims just like yours.  

Rhiannon Templeton bio pic

Rhiannon Templeton

Senior Associate

One of Victoria’s leading experts in workers compensation claims, backed by over two decades worth of experience in assisting injured Australians receive everything they’re entitled to.

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