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Motor Vehicle Accidents

How long after a car accident can you claim in Australia?

By LHD Lawyers

Depending on where in Australia your car accident happened and the type of personal injury claim you’re making, each state and territory has its own claim time limits. These can vary from one month after car accidents (QLD and ACT) right up to 12 years (NSW). Explore more details on the time limits by state for motor vehicle accident claims.

How soon after a car accident should I file my injury claim?

The sooner you file your claim, the sooner your insurer can start covering your bills and motor vehicle accident expenses for you. But putting together a claim that accurately reflects the impact a car accident has had on you can take time. So while you definitely don’t want to miss your motor vehicle claims deadline, you also want to make sure you allow enough time for all your injuries and issues to be fully evaluated and accounted for.

Are there different types of accident injury benefits? Do they have different time limits?

There are two main types of injury benefits, and the maximum length of time you have to file a claim depends on the state or territory you’re in.

  1. Statutory Benefits
    These financial benefits cover the driver who wasn’t at fault for death, injuries and loss of earnings for a set amount of time following car accidents. Some states now also allow at-fault drivers to access a proportion of these benefits.
  2. Personal Damages
    If a not-at-fault driver is left with severe and lasting injuries that cause them ongoing economic and non-economic suffering, they can claim additional personal compensation from the at-fault driver’s CTP insurance company in the form of Personal Damages.

How long do I have to file and make a claim after a car accident?

The table below shows the various time limits for submitting the two kinds of injury claims in each state and territory.

While this table was designed to be as accurate as possible, please consult us for advice and confirmation before filing a claim. We are experts on state laws and will be able to guide you through the requirements of each jurisdiction.

State/Territory Time Limit
NSW Statutory Benefits
– 3 months after car accidents

Personal Damages
– 3 years after becoming aware of the injury or 12 years after motor vehicle accidents, whichever is earlier

Explore our CTP guide for more information.

VIC Statutory Benefits
– Under 18: By age of 21
– 21 and over: 1 year after you first notice the injury

Personal Damages
– 6 years after the accidentExplore our TAC guide for more information.

QLD Statutory Benefits
– Vehicle cannot be identified: 3 months
– You have a lawyer handling your claim: 1 month after consulting with lawyer
– Everyone else: 9 months after you notice the injury

Personal Damages
– 3 years after the accident

SA Statutory Benefits
– Vehicle cannot be identified or is uninsured: As soon as is deemed reasonable
– Everyone else: 6 months after the accident

Personal Damages
– 3 years after the accident

WA Statutory Benefits
– 6 months after the accident

Personal Damages
– 3 years after the accident

TAS Statutory Benefits
– 12 months after the accident

Personal Damages
– 3 years after becoming aware of the injury

NT Statutory Benefits
– 6 months after the accident

Personal Damages
– 3 years after the accident

ACT Statutory Benefits
– To receive early benefits: 30 days after the accident
– To receive additional benefits (via CTP insurer): 9 months
– Claiming via Nominal Defendant: 3 months
– A lawyer is handling your claim: 1 month

Personal Damages
– 3 years after becoming aware of the injury

 

Can these time limits be extended?

It is possible for claims made after the stated time limits to be accepted – IF the relevant state authority agrees there were reasonable grounds for your delay. Some states also have slightly different limits to the ones listed above if the injured person is a child. It is ideal, though, to reduce the number of variables your claim must face and submit it within the stated limits if possible.

Make a motor vehicle accident claim today

LHD Lawyers help everyday Australians receive the benefits they are entitled to for motor vehicle accident claims. We are so sure of our abilities to win your case that we stand firmly by our No Win No Fee Policy. Call 1800 838 481 to arrange a consultation.

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