2020 Updated Guide To Making a Road Accident Claim In WA
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Millner and Knight manage West Australia’s largest panel of motor accident law firms, committed to getting claimants a better deal when it comes to making claim. Call us now on 08 6118 1673 to find out how we can make it right.
Facts about road accidents in WA
If you’re aged between 17 and 25, your chance of being seriously injured or killed in Western Australia will most likely occur as a result of a motor vehicle crash, which is why it pays to be aware of accident compensation benefits and it’s smart to let the experts smooth out your claims process.
The latest statistics reveal that a staggering 45% of young people killed in the 17 to 25-year age group have lost their lives due to motor vehicle accidents, which claimed 1,225 people in Australia last year and 665 to date in 2018.
Of these, preliminary figures reveal that 161 people were killed on Western Australian roads last year, which pales in comparison to the most recent annual serious injury toll figures, numbering 51,000 across Australia, including 3,228 in WA, from motor vehicle incidents.
The 2017 MVA fatality rate in WA was 6,2% per 100,000 people, higher than the national average of 5%. An average of 13 road deaths occurred each month, peaking at 22 fatalities in December and 19 in April. The Wheatbelt region recorded the highest number of deaths in the state (39.1% per 100,000 people) and the South East Metropolitan District the lowest (2.9% per 100,000).
Death or injury – in almost all instances – strikes like a thief in the night. Most people are unprepared for the emotional trauma that ensues after losing a loved one or the strain of having to cope with injury, either suffered personally or to friends and/or family. These issues can be magnified while also having to deal with what can be a stressful claims process.
This is where Millner and Knight come into the picture by providing professional assistance, at no personal cost, while referring your claim to CTP niche lawyers on our books who are best suited to fighting for your claim so that you can have peace of mind as you focus on the healing process.
At Millner and Knight, our compensation solicitors pride themselves on our ability to help smooth a path for the claims process. We also regard it as a care of duty to inform injured parties of their rights while providing some tips on the dos and don’ts of journeying towards the security of safety net compensation.
What to do if you have an accident?
So, if you are involved in an accident, it pays to know that:
- Under no circumstances admit liability
- Report the incident in the desired timeframe through the OCR facility or to WA police or both
- If you are contacted by a witness to the crash or an injured third party of their legal representative, avoid discussing any aspect of the incident with these people.
- If possible, try and make notes of any important information such as vehicle registration numbers, particularly in a hit-and-run incident, and the names and contact details of any potential witnesses.
- Motor injury insurance, both for personal and third-party cover, is compulsory in Western Australia, irrespective of which driver was at fault or whether fault was able to be proven.
- This delivers lifetime treatment, care and support for people injured in MVA’s.
- Drivers, passengers, pedestrians and cyclists, as well as close relatives who were financially dependent on a person fatally injured, can all claim.
- To claim for medical and associated health treatment costs, economic loss and compensation for pain and suffering, it is necessary to establish that fault, completely or in part, was due to other driver(s). If the vehicle at fault was licensed in another state or territory, the claim will fall under the jurisdiction of the relevant compulsory third party insurer.
- Injury claimants can, from 1 July 2016, claim for care and support even if they were at fault for a crash or unable to establish fault against a third party. A claim can similarly be made if the vehicle at fault is unidentified or unlicensed such as in a ‘hit and run’ situation. In this instance, the Insurance Commission would act in the role of a ‘Nominal Defendant’.
- Compensation may be reduced if you were; not wearing a seatbelt, not wearing a helmet while riding a motorbike, scooter or bicycle, riding unrestrained in an open-top vehicle, deemed to have contributed to the crash and if you, or your driver, were under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
If you are catastrophically injured and are unable to establish fault against a third party in the crash, you may be entitled to receive lifetime care and support paid on an as you go basis as part of the expansion of motor injury insurance from 1 July 2016.
If you are a relative of a person fatally injured and was financially dependent on the deceased, you may be able to claim: funeral and headstone expenses, loss of financial benefit provided by the deceased and loss of services provided by the deceased.
Would you like more information on how to make a claim?