You may be entitled to receive motor accident compensation if you suffer injuries due to a hit and run accident. You might think that the absence of the negligent driver can hinder your right to receive compensation. In fact, the Australian government took the responsibility to look after the hit and run victims in 1961 by establishing the first Nominal Defendant Fund. Even if the driver of the vehicle that caused you injuries is unidentified or untraceable, you may still receive road accident compensation from the Nominal Defendant. Under the Motor Accident Injuries Act 2017, you may receive personal injury benefits and claim Common Law damages in case your injuries are more than minor injuries.
Who will compensate for my injuries?
The statutory body named as the Nominal Defendant will take the responsibility to cover your loss if the runaway driver remains unidentified. The Nominal Defendant is a government entity to hold you harmless in a situation where the accused party is unidentified and untraceable. The Nominal defendant will substitute the position of any licensed insurer to compensate for the loss of the victim. This means nothing will prevent you to cover your loss after experiencing an unfortunate accident.
What is a hit-and-run?
The drivers involved in a motor vehicle accident should report the accident to the police, exchange information for fiscal responsibility,and seek for emergency services if the situation is serious. If a driver refuses to stop by and flees, the runaway driver will be judged with a criminal offence. The sanctions of such crime generally include cancellation of license, fines and even imprisonment.
What can I claim?
Under the Motor Accident Injuries Act 2017, you may receive personal injury benefits until a common law claim is settled. Personal injury benefits which are also stated as ‘‘statutory benefits’’ may award you with income support payments and medical expenses if you have loss of earnings and suffering injuries. Even if you are at fault, you can still receive statutory benefits for 6 months. Income support payments are based on your pre-accident income and for the first 13 weeks, the payments will be a maximum of 95% of your pre-accident income. After 14 weeks, the amount will decrease to a maximum of 85% of your pre-accident income.
If your injuries are assessed as more than minor injuries if you were not wholly at fault, you can claim lump sum compensation. You may be entitled to receive lump sum compensation for your non-economic, which is defined as pain & suffering, loss of amenities of life, loss of life expectancy and disfigurement and economic loss which is decreased earning capacity and loss of superannuation entitlements.
Should I hire a lawyer?
Individuals representing themselves in such serious claims can face the possibility to be unaware of their rights which may lead to undercompensating. Suffering severe injuries and impairment may lead to unfortunate financial difficulties and threaten your economic safety. A hit and run compensation lawyer will ensure you understand your rights and perform with a great commitment for maximising your compensation. Gathering the evidence that may play a key role in the case can be frustrating and wearing while suffering injuries and financial difficulties. Your lawyer will make sure to obtain every document that will increase your chance to receivea lump sum payout compensation. If you hesitate to work with a lawyer because of your financial situation, lawyers acting on no win no pay basis will be an opportunity for you. No win no fee lawyers will only charge you if you can successfully receive compensation.