Car accidents are increasingly occurring on our roads and being injured in one can certainly be an overwhelming experience. In the midst of dealing with bodily injuries, property damage and the financial repercussions, it can be hard to know where to begin and what needs to be dealt with first.
If you have been involved in a car accident, then you may need to hire a lawyer to help you claim the compensation you deserve. Car accident lawyers are experienced professionals who are experts at dealing with the compensation claims process. Read on to find out more about why you should hire a lawyer after a car accident.
A lawyer can determine which compensation claim is available to you
A lawyer can determine which car accident insurance claim you are eligible to make, and which claim offers you the greatest chance of success. Generally, if you have been injured in a car accident as a driver, passenger or pedestrian, then you may be eligible.
There are many different types of compensation claims available to those who have been injured in a car accident, including:
Accident notification claim
This claim must be lodged with the CTP insurer of the negligent driver within 28 days of the accident. For this claim, you can receive up to $5000 in compensation for expenses incurred up to six months after the accident occurred.
Personal injury claim
This claim must also be lodged with the CTP insurer of the negligent driver, and within six 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 six months.
Fatal motor vehicle accident claim
Family members who have lost a loved one in a fatal motor vehicle accident will be entitled to claim compensation. The time limit for this claim applies from six months of the date of the accident, or from the date of the death.
Nominal defendant claims
In some circumstances, such as during a hit and run, it may not be possible to identify details of the other motor vehicle. In this case, the injured party should consider filing a claim under the NSW’s Nominal Defendant scheme. This claim must be made within six months of the accident.
A lawyer can navigate you through the claims process
Once a lawyer has identified the relevant compensation claim for their client, they are then able to navigate them through this complex process.
A lawyer can help you to identify and collect all the relevant evidence and information needed for a successful claim. This can include the registration numbers of the car involved, the other driver’s insurance details, witness statements, medical records and surveillance footage.
Lawyers are also aware of the strict time limits for making claims, and therefore can assist you to make a claim as soon as possible to secure your best chance at receiving compensation for your injuries. If your compensation claim is not lodged within the relevant time period, your lawyer may be able to apply on your behalf to the courts for a time extension.
A lawyer can maximise the compensation you receive
Personal injury compensation can only be claimed for certain expenses, such as:
- Medical, rehabilitation and hospital expenses, and any potential future expenses
- Loss of earnings, including superannuation, and future loss of earning capacity
- Compensation for pain, suffering and loss of enjoyment of life, if the victim has suffered a whole person impairment over the 10% threshold
- Home modification and attendant care expenses
A lawyer can identify all the relevant expenses that you can claim compensation for, helping you to secure the maximum compensation amount possible. Lawyers also play a vital role in negotiating a settlement for their clients from the opposing insurance companies.
Lawyers operate under the ‘no win no fee’ arrangement
The ‘no win no fee’ arrangement is beneficial for injured parties as you can have access to lawyers to assist with your compensation claim, while not having to worry about paying the financial costs upfront.
This arrangement helps to take the burden off the clients throughout the compensation claims process as lawyers fees are only paid if you reach a successful outcome.
For more information on making a motor vehicle accident claim, contact Schreuders today.