Posted on 30 Nov. 2018
Injured NSW motorists are being denied benefits as a result of a strict 28 day timeframe in which to lodge a CTP claim.
Tomorrow, December 1, marks the anniversary of the NSW Government’s CTP changes under which injured motorists were told they’d be better off.
But injured motorists are being denied benefits because they are either unaware of the strict 28 day timeframe or are unable to lodge a claim in that period.
Slater and Gordon Practice Group Leader Genevieve Henderson said the timeframe was incredibly unfair and the scheme had been designed to exclude people from accessing the benefits they are entitled to.
“If a claim is not lodged within 28 days the person is not eligible to be paid statutory benefits from the date of the accident. Instead they will only be paid benefits from the date they lodged the claim,” Ms Henderson said.
“There are a number of reasons why people might be unable to lodge a claim in that period – it may be that they are incapacitated, have language barriers, have been misled about the process or simply aren’t aware that they only have that window to lodge the claim.
“However there is no discretion to extend the timeframe under any circumstances – even if the person is in a coma.
“Tradies and other small business owners who are self-employed, or people who are on casual contracts and don’t have sick leave are the hardest hit.
“The government has created a technicality to deny people access to compensation despite the fact they clearly suffered an injury due to a transport accident.
“The time limit should be either abolished or discretion applied to extend the time,” she said.
Ms Henderson said one client suffered injuries to his shoulder, ribs and rotator cuff when he was involved in a motor vehicle accident that was not his fault.
“The insurer of the at fault vehicle assured him that his medical expenses and loss of income would be covered, however he was not aware until almost two months later that he also had to lodge a claim with the CTP insurer.
“He was told he was not entitled to any compensation for wage loss before the date of the lodgement due to the 28 day timeframe and the inability to apply discretion to the timeframe.
”It is completely unfair and good people are being denied benefits because this time limit is designed to benefit the insurers not the people who have suffered injuries,” Ms Henderson said.