Motor vehicle accidents are stressful and traumatic experiences for everyone involved, and those who suffer injuries as a result are often unsure of what help is available. If you've been hurt on the roads, read on for a step-by-step guide to help you determine whether you are entitled to make a claim for compensation, how to do so, and who to contact for help.
What is a green slip claim?
A green slip is an insurance policy you must hold in order to register a vehicle in New South Wales. It provides compensation for people injured in motor vehicle accidents, regardless of where the accident occurred or who was at fault.
Under the green slip policy, if you are injured in a motor vehicle accident that was not your fault, you are entitled to a lump sum award of compensation. You will also be reimbursed for all reasonable expenses incurred throughout the duration of your claim. This is the case even if the vehicle at fault was unregistered or unidentifiable. If you were at fault, your green slip may still entitle you to limited cover, including costs of treatment and loss of income up to $5000.
What will be covered?
A green slip claim will generally provide compensation for:
- Past and future medical expenses;
- Loss of earnings and earning capacity;
- Pain and suffering; and
- Any domestic help or support you may require.
The amount of compensation you are entitled to receive will depend on the severity of your injuries, the nature of the collision, your employment, and the treatment you require.
What steps do I need to take?
To ensure you have the best possible chance of receiving the compensation you deserve, there are important steps you should take within certain time-frames:
- Directly after your accident - Following the accident, it is best to collect as much information as possible. This includes the other driver's personal, registration and insurance details, the name and contact information of any witnesses, and any photos of the damage and/or your injuries. Police are required to attend in the event of an injury, so be sure to call the Police Assistance Line if no one is present.
- Soon after your accident - Regardless of the severity of your injuries, you should visit your doctor as soon as possible and explain to them what has happened. You will need a valid medical certificate to support your claim. It is also important to keep any medical records you receive, including medical certificates, receipts or medications. If you are unable to work, you should also contact your employer. If you need time off or special duties because of your injury, it is best to get this in writing through email, text message or a hand-written note.
- Within 28 days after your accident Lodge your Application for Personal Injury Benefits - if you lodge within 28 days you will be able to access backpay to the date of the crash. The backpay should cover your medical expenses that resulted from injuries from the crash as well as up to 95% of your average wage should be recoverable through your CTP insurance while you're off work for up to 13 weeks. If you are off work for longer than 13 weeks, you may be able to get income support payments extended however this will be at a lower rate (10-15% lower). Your insurer should be in touch within three working days of you lodging the application but keep in mind that it may take up to four weeks for the insurer to assess your claim.
- Within three months of the crash - you can still submit your Application for Personal Injury Benefits within three months of the crash occurring however it is much better to do so within the 28 days mentioned above as it will help you to access backpay to the date of the crash. If you are late you will receive the benefits from the date of lodgement.
- Within Three years after the accident If you have more than a minor injury, were not at fault and the accident was caused by another driver or vehicle owner, you may be eligible to make a common law claim. This will help you to access the compensation and treatment you are entitled to, and get back on your feet as soon as possible.
Shine Lawyers - we're here to help
Shine Lawyers has been helping people get back on their feet for over 40 years, and have an outstanding record of legal success and customer satisfaction. We offer our services on a 'No Win, No Fee' basis, meaning you will only pay legal costs if your claim is successful.
Written by Shine Lawyers. Last modified: June 16, 2020.