Common law claim entitlements.
If your common law claim has been rejected, the first thing you need to do is understand why it was rejected. There are 4 possible reasons:
- If you were at fault in the accident
- If the insurer deemed your injuries to be minor
- If you missed the deadline for claiming
- If you claimed pain and suffering, but were assessed as having <10% whole person impairment (WPI)
Were you at fault?
If you were at fault in the accident, you’re not entitled to make a common law damages claim. However, in some accidents there’s not necessarily just one driver at fault – it may be determined that each driver was partially at fault. In that case, you may still be entitled to make a common law damages claim, although the lump sum payment may be reduced to allow for your “contributory negligence”.
Were your injuries assessed as minor?
If the insurer has determined that your injuries are minor, it could use that as grounds for rejecting your common law damages claim. However, if you have a non-minor injury that was missed during the assessment, or you’ve developed physiological injuries since the assessment, you may be eligible to have your injuries re-assessed. And if that assessment shows that you have a non-minor injury, then you may be eligible to make a common law damaged claim. Read our article on minor and non-minor injuries or download our guide of commonly overlooked non-minor injuries.
Did you miss the deadline?
- Your lump sum claims must be made within three years of the date of the motor accident.
- If your injuries are 10% or less ‘whole person impairment’, you must make your claim between 20 months and three years after the accident.
- If your injuries are more than 10% ‘whole person impairment, you can make your claim any time.
If your claim has been rejected on the basis that you missed the deadline, you should talk to a specialist CTP solicitor, to determine whether there are extenuating circumstances that might allow you to submit your claim outside the usual deadline. You can call our free advice line for more information on this.
Were you denied a pain and suffering lump sum?
To be eligible to claim pain and suffering, your injuries need to have been assessed as greater than 10 % WPI. So if your assessment shows less than 10% WPI, then the only way to claim pain and suffering is to have your assessment changed. An experienced CTP solicitor can advise you on whether your injuries have been assessed correctly, and whether there’s a possibility of presenting new evidence that might change your assessment.
Getting legal help.
Common law damages claims are complex, but the lump sum amounts can be substantial. If you’ve had your common law damages claim rejected, don’t assume that’s the end of the matter – talk to a specialist CTP lawyer and find out what your options are. You can call our free advice line and one of our specialist lawyers will be happy to assess your claim.
If you’ve had your common law damages claim rejected, don’t assume that’s the end of the matter – talk to a specialist CTP lawyer and find out what your options are.