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The Ultimate Guide To Personal Injury Claims in Australia

By LHD Lawyers

If you’re suffering from an injury that originated in an accident, you may not have to foot the bill for your recovery on your own. You can file a personal injury claim and potentially get your insurer to cover your medical expenses and even the income you lost while you were injured.

This guide will define a personal injury claim in Australia, as well as explain these key takeaways:

  • The different types of personal injury claims
  • The time limit for filing a personal injury claim
  • Who is eligible to make a claim
  • How to file your claim on personal injury
  • Whether you can file if the accident was your fault
  • How to prove a claim
  • How much you may expect to receive

What is a personal injury claim?

A personal injury claim is a claim you make with your insurer when you’ve been involved in an accident and suffered an injury or illness. If your claim is approved, you could recover damages for all your medical bills, pain and suffering, and loss of earnings if you weren’t able to return to work right away (or ever).

This type of claim can even be paid out to your beneficiaries if an accident results in your wrongful death.

What are the different types of personal injury claims?

There are four different types of personal injury claims:

Type of Personal Injury Claim Description
Workers Compensation A claim for an injury or illness incurred at your job.
Motor Vehicle Accident A claim for an injury or illness sustained during a motor vehicle accident (whether or not you were a driver)
Public Liability A claim for an injury or illness sustained in a public place or on private property that occurred due to the property owner’s negligence.
Medical Negligence A claim for an injury or illness that came about due to medical malpractice or negligence by a health professional or institution.

What is the time limit for making a personal injury claim?

If you’re thinking about making a personal injury claim, be aware that you are on a time limit. The statute of limitations varies depending on what type of personal injury you’re claiming and what state in Australia you reside in. In general, though, here’s what you can expect.

Type of Personal Injury Claim Time Limit To Make a Claim
Workers Compensation 6 months (or up to 3 years in some cases)
Motor Vehicle Accident 3 months
Public Liability 3 years
Medical Negligence 3 years

Who is eligible to make a personal injury claim?

You are eligible to make a personal injury claim in Australia if you live in the country, and if you were:

  • Injured on the job
  • Injured in a car accident
  • Injured in a public place, like a sports arena or a park, due to the negligence of the local governing authority
  • Injured on private property due to the negligence of the owner of the property
  • Injured by a health professional or by a medical institution due to negligence

How do you claim a personal injury accident?

 To claim a personal injury accident, here are the steps you should follow:

  1. Report the incident. Depending on what type of accident you were involved in, you may need to report it to your employer, the police, the owner or governing authority over the property where you were injured, or a lawyer.
  2. See your doctor. Get a full assessment of your physical and mental health, and make copies of any test results, receipts, and records.
  3. Gather evidence. Your successful personal injury accident claim rests on you being able to prove that you were injured and that you deserve compensation for damages.
  4. File a claim. Once again, the process for this step will vary depending on what type of personal injury claim you’re making. For example, if you’re making a workers compensation claim, you must file through your employer. If you’re making a motor vehicle accident claim, you must file through your auto insurance company. An experienced lawyer can help you take the right route.

What can you claim for when making a personal injury claim?

There are many different types of accidents and illnesses that you can claim for personal injury. Below is a list of some of the most common ones that are experienced at work, on the road, while running errands, and while receiving medical treatment:

  • Falls from a height
  • Back injuries
  • Hearing loss
  • Industrial disease
  • Hit and runs
  • Car crash
  • Cyclist accident
  • Slip and falls
  • Misdiagnosis
  • Surgical errors and mistakes
  • Medication error
  • Birth defect
  • Pain and suffering (i.e., depression, anxiety, PTSD, etc.)
  • Loss of enjoyment of life

Can I claim personal injury if the accident was my fault?

You can still claim personal injury, even if the accident that caused it was your fault. But you will likely receive less compensation, and there is even a possibility that you will receive no compensation whatsoever.

Are personal injury claims taxable?

Generally speaking, lump sum personal injury claim settlements are not regarded as taxable income in Australia. However, if you make a workers compensation claim through WorkCover and receive weekly payments, those are usually taxed.

How do you prove a personal injury claim?

We mentioned earlier that gathering evidence to prove your claim is crucial to getting the payout you deserve. Here are some examples of proofs you may be able to collect and show to your insurer or personal injury claims lawyer.

  • Photos and/or surveillance footage of the accident
  • Police reports
  • Medical records
  • Medical bills
  • Receipts for travel expenses related to your injury

The more of these you can obtain (where applicable), the better.

How much can you receive for a personal injury claim?

There is no cap on the amount of money that you can receive for most personal injury claims in Australia. The payout is determined by a variety of factors, including the extent of your injuries and the impact that your accident had on your ability to work. It also depends on whether or not you were at fault.

Can you file a personal injury claim without a lawyer?

It’s possible to file a personal injury claim without a lawyer for workers compensation, a motor vehicle accident, and public liability. For medical negligence, however, a lawyer will be critical to you winning a settlement.

Furthermore, due to how varied and complex the personal injury claim process can be for filing each type of claim – and given that each case involves unique factors – hiring a lawyer to help you make a personal injury claim is always a smart move. With their expertise, they can make the process go much smoother and easier for you.

Make a personal injury claim today

If you think you have a personal injury claim to make in Australia, LHD Lawyers can help everyday Australians receive the benefits they’re entitled to. We are so sure of our abilities to win your case that we stand firmly by our No Win No Fee policy for compensation claims, contact us for a free consultation or call 1800 455 725.

Author: James Bodel

LHD Lawyers | Feature Callout

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