For many, public transport is an inevitable part of life. Whether you catch public transport to school or work, or share the roads with public transport vehicles, it’s everywhere. Unfortunately, a number of people are injured by public transport road accidents every day and, quite often, through no fault of their own.
Although these accidents can result in serious injuries for the parties involved, many people remain unaware that they are entitled to compensation just as much as any other road accident. Read on to find out more about how you can receive compensation for public transport road accidents.
Am I eligible to make a road accident compensation claim?
If you have been injured as a result of a public transport road accident, then you are eligible to make a road accident compensation claim. As the driver of the public transport vehicle is usually at fault, road accident compensation claims are usually brought against the employer of the driver.
What types of public transport does a claim cover?
A road accident compensation claim covers only certain forms of public transport, including:
- Light rail
However, a claim does not cover any form of air transport.
What are the common types of public transport road accidents?
Public transport road accidents generally include (but are not limited to):
- Negligent driving of the public transport vehicle, causing injuries to its passengers
- Negligent driving of the public transport vehicle, causing injuries to pedestrians or other road users
What is required for making a road accident compensation claim?
- Seek medical attention.
It is important to ensure that any injuries sustained from an accident receive immediate medical treatment. This is not only for health reasons, but also because medical records and receipts are required as evidence for any future claims. Even if you feel as though you have not suffered any injury, sometimes injuries take time to appear and seeking medical attention helps determine if any future medical treatment or ongoing care required, for compensation purposes.
- Obtain the details.
Ensure you obtain the details of the public transport vehicle that caused the accident, such as a registration number, the contract details of the public transport company and their insurer.
- Report the accident to the police as soon as possible.
If you have failed to report the accident within 28 days, you will be required to justify this delay when making a claim. Ensure that once you have reported the accident, you receive an event number from the police as this will be required for future claims.
- Lodge an accident notification claim.
This claim must be lodged with the employer of the public transport driver, within 28 days of the accident. For this claim, you can receive up to $5000 in compensation for expenses incurred up to 6 months after the accident occurred.
- Lodge a personal injury claim.
This claim must be also be lodged with the employer of the public transport driver, and within 6 months of the accident. This claim is for when the injured party expects their expenses to amount more than $5000, or that their recovery time will exceed 6 months.
What can I receive compensation for?
How much compensation you can receive will depend on your circumstances and is based on the nature and extent of your injuries. You may claim compensation for:
- Medical expenses (both past and in future).
This may include hospital fees, doctors fees, cost of medication etc
- Loss of earnings (both past and in future).
This may include time off work, loss of overtime or additional hours, or even a loss of a potential promotion
- Care and assistance.
Applicable in cases where your injury may require you to seek assistance from other people to help with household duties
- Home modification.
Applicable in cases where your injury may require you to make modifications to your home in order to accommodate your injuries (such as installing a ramp)
- Pain, suffering and loss of enjoyment of life, if you have suffered a whole person impairment over the 10% threshold
Are there time limits in making a compensation claim?
Yes, strict time limits do apply. The injured person usually has only three years from the date of the accident to bring forth a claim. Therefore, is important to ensure you make a claim as soon as possible to secure your best chance at receiving compensation for your injuries.
For more information about road accident compensation claims, contact Schreuder Partners today.