Anyone who’s ever had a car accident knows the pain they cause endures far beyond the initial impact. As well as dealing with the potential physical and psychological trauma caused, those who aren’t at fault are also faced with the often confusing, costly and time-consuming task of receiving compensation.
You can claim compensation for a variety of things, including economic loss if you’re unable to return to work in the same capacity as before, domestic assistance, as well as your pain and suffering.
Timeline for Car Accident Compensation Claims
Anyone who has been injured in a car accident—be it a driver, cyclist, passenger or pedestrian—may be entitled to claim coverage.
However, it’s important to keep in mind there are strict time restrictions involved for each stage of the process.
The best thing to do is to contact a road accident lawyer to discuss the process and how you can have the best chance at receiving compensation.
The time limits for your specific compensation claim will depend on the type of claim you are making, such as whether it’s a personal injury claim, or if someone has died.
There are, however, ways to extend these deadlines in special circumstances.
The Duration of a Motor Vehicle Compensation Claim
The industry standard turnaround time for motor vehicle compensation claims is three to five years. If you’re suffering immediate consequences from your accident that are taking a strain on your finances, this can be a challenging wait.
At Schreuders, we appreciate that there are myriad factors that contribute to your compensation claim processing time.
We also understand that everyone who has been injured in a car accident deserves to see their claim processed as soon as possible. This way everyone has the best chance of receiving fair compensation when it can be of most use.
In many cases, we are able to finalise your compensation claim within a year to 18 months. This is considerably quicker than the industry standard, so you can be compensated for the injuries that are impacting you right now.
Why Do Car Accident Claims Take So Long?
A year to 18 months is still a significant amount of time to wait, and it can be frustrating. However, it’s worth knowing that there are good reasons for the wait and that they are working in your favour.
You are generally only allowed to make the one claim, so you want to be sure that you are taking all of the steps required to give yourself the best chance of receiving compensation.
You also want to be sure that you’re being reimbursed for all the financial expenses that you’ve incurred, not just the ones that you can think of off the top of your head.
Finally, if you’ve sustained physical injuries, you’ll usually need to wait until they’ve stabilised to give you the best idea of how much compensation is going to be fair.
Imagine if you rushed a motor vehicle compensation claim and received a certain amount, only for your injuries to take a turn for the worse. In this case, you would have been able to claim much, much more to cover your costs.
How to Have the Best Chance of Success
In our years of experience, we’ve come across some devastating stories of people who were injured in a car accident, but made some mistakes with their claim, leading to its rejection.
To prevent such mistakes, you must ensure you lodge your first form with the compulsory third party insurer within six months of the accident.
It might seem obvious, but life does have a habit of getting in the way. Before you know it, months have passed by and you may miss out on this critical period.
Secondly, we can’t stress enough the importance of speaking with your road accident lawyer before you engage with an insurance investigator—the earlier, the better.
As part of their job, insurance investigators will ask you a series of questions, not necessarily just about the accident. All of your responses are recorded and will have a bearing on the result.
Whether you intend it or not, you might find that you struggle to find the right words, say something you might not mean, or allow yourself to be guided by leading questions.
All of these can get you in hot water if you don’t have legal guidance.
Without relying on the expertise of a road accident lawyer, you aren’t giving yourself the best shot at fair compensation. While you may leap at the chance and sign for $20,000 of compensation, a lawyer might have known that you were entitled for five or ten times that under the Act.
This is why it is so important to engage road accident lawyers like Schreuders as soon as you can. Although the duration of a motor vehicle compensation claim may seem daunting, you’ll get the best result and your life back on track sooner.
Get in contact with our motor vehicle compensation lawyers today.