If you were injured in a motor vehicle accident, on and from the 1st of December, 2017, there are two types of compensation you can claim: Statutory benefits, including weekly payments and medical treatment, and lump sum compensation damages.
Our Director and Senior Lawyer, Andrew McQuilkin explains what you should know.
It’s important to understand that lump sum compensation damages is only available if you have more than a minor injury, and are not wholly at fault in the accident.
Minor injuries include soft-tissue injuries, such as muscle strains. Non-minor injuries include such things as fractures, torn ligaments, or recognisable psychiatric injuries.
As long as you have at least one non-minor injury, you can claim lump sum compensation damages. That is the case even if the non-minor injury has completely healed. The insurer should make an assessment of whether your injuries are minor or non-minor within three months of you lodging the claim. It os therefore extremely important to get diagnosed and examined early, so that you’re not precluded from making a claim.
Determining if an injury is non-minor or not is a complex question, requiring consideration of the legal definitions, and a complete examination of your clinical records. Never take an insurers decision at face value. If a decision is made by an insurer about a non-minor injury contact a lawyer for advice. In a lump sum damages claim, you’re able to claim all of your economic loss, both in the past and in the future. You’re also entitled to claim pain and suffering compensation if you reach an additional threshold.
The entitlement to claim lump sum damages is a significant legal right, so if you, or someone you know, has been injured in a motor vehicle accident get legal advice early, as strict time limits can apply.