The Personal Injury Lawyers
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glossary

Glossary of terms

Glossary

A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z

Whenever you work with us we make it our aim to make your claim as easy and as simple as possible. However you may come across some legal terms that we thought it useful to present and explain below should you come across them. Click one of the letters above to move to the the terms beginning with that letter.


A


Accredited Personal Injury Specialist

An accredited personal injury specialist is a lawyer who specialises in personal injury claims and has achieved accreditation for his expertise in this area from the Queensland Law Society, the body that regulates lawyers and legal practice in Queensland. In providing accreditation, the Queensland Law Society is confirming, from assessments undertaken of the lawyer’s knowledge and expertise, that the personal injury lawyer is an expert in the field of personal injury law in Queensland.

If you would like to know more about the legal services we offer submit your personal injury claim and we will send you an Initial Claim Pack. Each pack contains useful information about making a personal injury claim and details the steps you must take to protect and pursue your personal injury claim.

Appraisal of Your Claim

We will provide you with a free appraisal of your claim. What this means is that we will discuss your claim with you and provide you with our advice as to whether we consider you do have a personal injury claim and that it is one worthwhile pursuing.

If you would like to know more about the legal services we offer submit your personal injury claim and we will send you an Initial Claim Pack. Each pack contains useful information about making a personal injury claim and details the steps you must take to protect and pursue your personal injury claim.


C


Common Law Claim

When you pursue a personal injury claim, you are seeking damages against a party for negligence or civil assault. This is called a Common Law Claim. This term is used to distinguish a claim that is grounded in Common Law from a claim that is grounded in Statutory law. A Common Law Claim is based on decisions made by the Judiciary (judges in courts of law). A Statutory Claim is only available where legislation has specifically provided the right to such a claim. An example of this is a workers’ compensation claim where the Workers’ Compensation & Rehabilitation Act 2003 permits injured workers in Queensland to claim Statutory benefits (medical costs and wages) when they are injured at work, whether the injury was caused by the employer’s negligence or wrongful act or omission or not. It is a “no fault scheme”. But a worker who is injured at work, will not always have a Common Law Claim, that is, a claim that he can pursue in the court for Common Law Damages. To have a Common Law Claim, there must be some fault on the part of the employer resulting in the worker’s injury occurring in the course of employment.

Compensation

When we refer to compensation we are referring to the amount of money (or damages as it is called in personal injury law terms), that you should receive to compensate you for your injuries and the expenses you have reasonably incurred and are likely to reasonably incur in the future, because of your injuries. It also has another meaning however when you have a work injury claim in Queensland. In a work injury claim it is referring to compensation you receive during your worker’s compensation claim, which is distinct from damages you receive during your Common Law Claim (or law suit) against your employer for negligently or wrongfully causing you injury.

If you would like to know more about the legal services we offer submit your personal injury claim and we will send you an Initial Claim Pack. Each pack contains useful information about making a personal injury claim and details the steps you must take to protect and pursue your personal injury claim.

Compulsory Third Party (CTP) Insurer

The Compulsory Third Party Insurer or CTP Insurer as it is otherwise known, is the insurer of the party that has by its wrongful act or omission, wholly or partly caused a motor vehicle accident. In Queensland all motor vehicle’s should be registered and consequently insured for compulsory third party insurance (insurance fees are included in registration fees). If a vehicle is not registered and therefore does not have a CTP insurer, or the vehicle causing an accident cannot be identified so that the CTP insurer cannot be identified, then the motor accident claim is made against the Nominal Defendant in Queensland as the CTP insurer.

Conditional Costs Agreement

A Conditional Costs Agreement is the Agreement made between The Personal Injury Lawyers and the injured person identifying the manner in which legal costs and disbursements will be charged at the end of the claim. It is termed a "conditional agreement" because The Personal Injury Lawyers will only charge you for its services and the expenses incurred in pursuing your claim, if we achieve compensation for you, that is, our services are provided on a No Win No Fee basis. The Conditional Costs Agreement is also known as the Client Agreement. 

Costs

"Costs" or “legal costs” are a reference to the professional fees and outlays (also called disbursements) that are involved in pursuing (or defending) a personal injury claim. Pursuant to legislation which governs personal injury claims in Queensland, there are circumstances in which there is a right for an injured party to recover some of their costs in pursuing their personal injury claim from the party that has caused their injury. In some exceptional cases, this legislation allows a party to recover all of their costs in pursuing their personal injury claim, however, this only occurs in very limited circumstances.

See also details of the 50/50 Rule in Queensland in relation to capping of costs in minor claims.


D


Damages/Common Law Damages

Damages or Common Law Damages means the money you receive to compensate you for your injuries in a personal injury claim. The amount of damages you receive depends on the extent of your injuries and the loss and expense you have incurred because of your injuries. In calculating your damages the following elements are taken into account:

  • Pain & suffering and loss of amenities;
  • Past and future loss of income;
  • Care costs;
  • Past and future medical & rehabilitation expenses;
  • Out of pocket expenses (ie. Treatment expenses and pharmaceutical expenses etc. you have reasonably incurred because of your injuries);
  • Loss of superannuation entitlements.

Disbursements

Disbursements or outlays as they are also known, are the expenses incurred in pursuing a personal injury claim such as medical report fees, barrister fees, mediation fees, forensic accountant fees, search fees (registration searches, company searches, police report searches), safety expert fees, courier fees, court filing fees etc.


F


Fifty/Fifty Rule (50/50 Rule)

In Queensland a Rule applies in cases where the award of damages or settlement sum is less than the legal professional fees that could be charged under the Costs Agreement between the parties, or the professional fees are so high that the claimant would be left with very little in-hand from their settlement sum.  That rule is called the 50/50 Rule and can be found at Section 347 of the Legal Profession Act 2007. The purpose of this Rule is to ensure that an injured claimant or plaintiff always achieves a fair share of their recovered damages.
 
A No Win No Fee Personal Injury firm cannot breach this 50/50 Rule, no matter how much the damages recovered are, unless special circumstances apply.
 
How the 50/50 Rule works is as follows:

  1. Firstly you take the total gross settlement amount to be received for your claim;
  2. From this is deducted any Statutory Refunds to be paid from your settlement sum (Statutory Refunds are such things as Refunds due to Workcover Queensland), Medicare Australia, DEEWR (for vocational rehabilitation) and Centrelink), as well as all disbursements incurred in the running of your claim (eg. Medical report fees, barrister fees, court filing fees etc);
  3. After these deductions are made, the resulting sum is then divided by two (2);
  4. The end result is the total amount that you can only be charged for professional costs for your claim (including GST). 

 
For example, if your claim only settled for $50,000, and fees under the Costs Agreement were, say $25,000, then professional costs could only be charged under the 50/50 Rule as follows:

  • ½ X ($50,000 less (statutory refunds of say $5,000 in total, plus, disbursements of say $7,500) which is ½ X ($50,000 - $12,500) and equates to ½ of $37,500 = $18,750.

So the total of professional costs that could only be charged would be $18,750 despite legal fees really being $25,000.  

Free Initial Consultation 

We will provide you with a free initial consultation. This means that we will discuss your claim with you and provide you with expert advice as to whether you do have a personal injury claim and whether such claim is worthwhile pursuing. You will not be charged for this initial consult or for the legal advice provided to you during such consultation. Your free initial consultationcan be carried out via telephone, by appointment or, we can come to you at your home if you are unable to come to us.

If you would like to know more about the legal services we offer submit your personal injury claim and we will send you an Initial Claim Pack. Each pack contains useful information about making a personal injury claim and details the steps you must take to protect and pursue your personal injury claim.

Free Legal Advice

We provide you with free legal advice which means we will provide you with a free appraisal of your claim in a free initial consultation. Your free initial consultation can be by way of visiting us at our offices or via a phone consult. In some cases, we may need to undertake some further investigations and discussions with you prior to determining whether your case is one worth pursuing, however, you do not start to incur any fees until such time as you retain the services of The Personal Injury Lawyers for your case.

If you would like to know more about the legal services we offer submit your personal injury claim and we will send you an Initial Claim Pack. Each pack contains useful information about making a personal injury claim and details the steps you must take to protect and pursue your personal injury claim.


I


Initial Claim Pack

Our Initial Claim Pack provides you with a copy of our Client Agreement and information about your rights and obligations under that agreement, as well as information about how your personal injury claim will run and what you need to do to ensure that you achieve your full compensation entitlements.

ISV Scale - Calculation of Damages

The ISV Scale forms part of the Civil Liability Act 2003 (CLA)an Act that regulates the award of certain heads of damage in personal injury claims in Queensland. In a personal injury claim, there are a number of what we term "heads of damage" which a person can claim compensation for. These comprise: 

  • General Damages - pain and suffering and loss of amenities of life suffered as a consequence of accident injuries
  • Past and future medical expenses or out of pocket expenses relating to your injuries
  • Past and future loss of income resulting from your injuries
  • Past and future care and assistance required due to your injuries
  • Loss of superannuation benefits on past and future lost income
  • Interest on past medical expenses, past care, past pain and suffering or past income

When calculating the amount that should be compensated to an injured person in a personal injury claim, the Court awards an amount it feels appropriate for each of these heads of damage having regard to the injuries sustained and the impact same have had upon the claimant and their pre-injury lifestyle and employment as well as what their reasonable needs are given those injuries. These amounts are then added up to provide the total amount of compensation that should be awarded for the claim, or what we call the "Quantum" of the claim. 

The ISV Scale is used to ascertain what award should be made for General Damages when calculating compensation to be awarded to an injured claimant. The CLA Regulations at Schedule 4, includes a table which sets out a vast range of injuries that can be suffered by a claimant, with varying types of injuries to varying parts of the body. Each injury has an ISV range accorded to it, for example, a moderate whiplash injury may have an ISV range of 5 to 10.  Each injury type also has a set of criteria which indicates at what level the injury should be assessed at within the allocated range, so the appropriate ISV rating for the injury can be ascertained. 

Once the ISV is ascertained, then that ISV number accords to a monetary amount on the ISV Scale. For instance, for a moderate cervical spine injury, you may feel your injury is at the higher end of the scale having regard to the extent of your injury and given the criteria stipulated in the CLA table of injuries, and therefore you have an ISV rating for your injury of 10.  This then correlates on the ISV Scale to a monetary amount of $12,950 to $14,850. This is the amount you hopefully should then be awarded for General Damages when the Quantum of your claim is being calculated. 

The idea of the scale is to rate the seriousness of the injury between 0 and 100,  with the most minor injury (e.g. a minor laceration to a finger), being at 1 on the scale and the more serious injuries (e.g. tetraplegic with extremely limited function) being at 100, and then according a monetary value to that rating. View the ISV Value Litigation Tables.


L


Lump Sum Compensation

When we refer to Lump Sum Compensation we are referring to the term given to a lump sum offered at the end of his workers' compensation claim because the worker has sustained a permanent impairment as a consequence of his workplace accident or injury. A worker must be very careful however when responding to any offer of lump sum compensation made by the workers' compensation insurer at the cessation of their workers' compensation claim, because, if the worker responds incorrectly to such lump sum offer, it can have disastrous results with the worker losing all rights whatsover to pursue a common law claim for damages for their work injuries. Lump sum offers made to workers at the end of a workers' compensation claim are usually quite minimal when compared to the compensation that is likely to be received should the worker pursue a Common Law claim for damages in relation to his work injury. The loss sustained to the worker should he fail to seek legal advice on this issue, can be very significant.

It is therefore EXTREMELY IMPORTANT that an injured worker obtains legal advice when responding to any lump sum offer made by the workers' compensation insurer at the end of their workers' compensation claim. The Personal Injury Lawyers specialise in all areas of personal injury law, including work injury claims and can assist you in providing the advice you need when dealing with the workers' compensation insurer during your workers' compensation claim and at the cessation of same when a lump sum offer may be received. If you would like to speak to one of our personal injury specialists, please contact us or submit your enquiry by clicking on the words "submit your personal injury claim" below, so we can contact you to discuss any queries you may have and put your mind at ease.


M


Motor Accident Claim

In Queensland, if you are injured in a motor vehicle accident and the accident was caused or contributed to by the wrongful act or omission of another party, then you may be entitled to make a motor accident claim for compensation for your injuries and the loss and expense you have sustained as a result of those accident injuries.


N


Negligence

 Negligence or negligent act, is referring to an act or a failure to act in circumstances where it is reasonably foreseeable that the action or omission to act is likely to result in injury to another.

No Win No Fee

We will undertake your claim on a ‘NO WIN NO FEE’ basis. This means that we will handle your claim on your behalf and we will pay for all outlays involved with pursuing your claim (ie. medical report fees, barrister fees, court filing fees, mediator fees, etc.) but we will not render an account for professional fees or outlays until you have received compensation for your injuries. Under our No Win No Fee scheme, the only circumstances that will give rise to any liability upon you to make payment for professional fees or disbursements in relation to your claim are as follows:

  • Where you achieve a compensation payment for your claim. In such case you are liable to meet our professional fees and the disbursements we have incurred in pursuing your claim on your behalf in accordance with our Conditional Costs Agreement. Our Conditional Costs Agreement will be provided to you in our Initial Claim Pack. 
  • In the event where your case proceeds to trial and you are unsuccessful in achieving an award for damages or costs, then you may be liable to pay the legal costs and disbursements of the party who successfully defended your claim.
  • If you do not achieve any compensation payment for your claim then you will not be liable to pay our professional fees or any disbursements we have incurred in pursuing your claim on your behalf.

Nominal Defendant

The Nominal Defendant is a government body specifically established in Queensland to act as the Compulsory Third Party Insurer (CTP Insurer) in motor accident claims where the vehicle that caused or contributed to the accident occurring cannot be identified or where the offending vehicle is not registered and there is therefore no CTP insurer to claim against. For example, where a motor vehicle swerves across a busy highway causing other vehicles to collide, but the offending vehicle continues on its way and is not involved in the collision and cannot be identified. In such case, a person injured in the accident may be able to make a claim against the Nominal Defendant as the CTP insurer of the unidentified vehicle to obtain compensation for his/her injuries.

When a claim is made, the Nominal Defendant then investigates the accident and tries to locate the at-fault vehicle and driver. This is usually done through CCTV footage of vehicles in the area of the accident scene about the time of the accident, where CCTV footage is available, and through interviewing local residents and business workers and owners, as well as through advertising.  If the vehicle cannot be identified, then the Nominal Defendant has to meet any injury compensation or damages to be paid to the accident victim as a consequence of the unidentified vehicle's negligence or wrongful act or ommision that caused the accident.

Please be aware and warned however that much stricter time limits apply to Nominal Defendant claims. You have 3 months to put the Nominal Defendant on notice of your claim, and you must have a Notice of Accident Claim formed lodged with the Nominal Defendant, which is fully compliant with the provisions of the Motor Accident Insurance Act 1994 within 9 months of the accident or you will lose all rights to claim injury compensation or damages whatsoever.

The reason for these strict time limits is to allow the Nominal Defendant to commence its investigations in order to identify the at-fault vehicle as soon as possible after the accident, when witnesses might still be in the local area and the incident is fresh in their minds, and also, any CCTV footage relating to the accident can be still be obtained.


O


Outlays

Outlays or disbursements as they are also known, are the expenses incurred in pursuing a personal injury claim such as medical report fees, barrister fees, mediation fees, forensic accountant fees, search fees (registration searches, company searches, police report searches), safety expert fees, courier fees, court filing fees etc.

 


P


Permanent Impairment of Degree of Permanent Impairment (DPI)

Permanent Impairment is the term given to permanent loss of bodily function sustained because of an injury. For example, when a person suffers a back injury, the injury will progress through a recovery period until it becomes what we call, "stable and stationary", at which point medical specialists can then assess what level of permanent impairment has been sustained because of the back injury. Taking a person's normal whole body functioning as being at 100%, an assessment will be made by the medical specialist as to what percentage of functioning the injured person has lost because of their injury (e.g. 10% loss of functioning = 10% permanent impairment). Medical specialists use special guidelines to calculate the percentage of lost functioning or impairment a person has permanently lost because of their injury, which have been specifically devised for this purpose, called the AMA Guides - the American Medical Assessment Guides.

Degree of permanent impairment is the same thing but it is a term used for the assessment of impairment in workplace injury claims in Queensland.  Degree of permanent impairment in cases involving injuries sustained in the course of employment are assessed under what is called "GEPI", the Guide for Evaluation of Permanent Impairment. This guide is specifically for the purpose of assessing work injuries in Queensland for degree of permanent impairment. Only medical specialists who have been trained to assess work injuries under GEPI are able to undertake these assessments. The GEPI guide however is based on the AMA Guides although it is not identical to it

Professional Fees

Professional fees are the fees charged for the legal services and professional expertise provided in pursuing a personal injury claim.

Public Liability Claim

This is the term given to claims where a person is injured in a public place or whilst visiting private business premises or other property, and your injury is caused or contributed to by the wrongful or negligent act or omission of another. Circumstances which may give rise to such claims are as follows:-

  • Slip and fall accidents, e.g. in supermarkets, shopping centres, retail centres and on footpaths;
  • Accidents at private residences;
  • Accidents at public places such as schools or in parks or playgrounds;
  • Injuries due to defective or faulty products;
  • Dog attacks;
  • Boat or jet ski accidents;
  • Injuries whilst in host employment;
  • Injuries sustained on construction sites.

Q


QComp or Workers' Compensation Regulator

QComp, or Workers' Compensation Regulator as it is now known, is the State Government body that has been set up pursuant to the Workers' Compensation & Rehabilitation Act 2003 specifically for the purpose of regulating the workers' compensation scheme and workers' compensation insurers in Queensland. Learn more about QComp, the workers' compensation Regulator in Queensland, by going to the website https://www.worksafe.qld.gov.au/news/2013/q-comp-regional-network-program.


S


Self-Insurer

Workcover Queensland is the workers'compensation insurer established by the Queensland Government to provide workers' compensation benefits (Statutory Benefits)for workers who are injured in the course of their employment in Queensland, and insurance coverage for the employers of such workers. Workcover Queensland was originally established under the Workcover Queensland Act 1996, but since the repeal of that legislation in 2003 it now has its foundations pursuant to the provisions of the Workers' Compensation & Rehabilitation Act 2003. Workcover Queensland is a quasi-governmental body set up specifically to provide assistance to injured workers in Queensland and to ensure that employers are able to meet compensation entitlements to their injured workers.

However, Workcover Queensland is not the only workers' compensation insurer in Queensland. There are also what are termed "Self-Insurer" workers' compensation schemes in Queensland. These are usually very large organisations with the capacity to meet the expense of running their own workers' compensation schemes under the relevant workers' compensation legislation in Queensland. For a list of workers' compensation self-insurers in Queensland go to the website of the workers' compensation scheme Regulator in Queensland, Qcomp at www.qcomp.qld.gov.au.

If you would like to know more about the legal services we offer let us assess your personal injury claim and we will provide you with useful information about making a personal injury claim and details the steps you must take to protect and pursue it.

Stable & Stationary

The term "stable and stationary" is normally used in personal injury claims when referring to the status of an injury. When a person sustains an injury, whether it is because of a motor vehicle accident or a work accident or an injury in a public place, the injury will initially go through a period of recovery until it reaches a plateau. What this means is that no matter what treatment is provided, the injury is not going to get any better. It is basically the best it is going to be and there is no further treatment that can really further improve the injury. This injury status is termed "stable and stationary". It is at this stage when an injury can then be assessed by medical specialists for permanent impairment, that is, they assess what level of impairment the injury is going to permanently cause the injured person in the future. It should also be noted that the term "stable and stationary" is a very important term in the context of a workers' compensation claim in Queensland. This is because, when a worker's injuries are considered to be "stable and stationary" by treating doctors during the workers' compensation claim, then this is when the workers' compensation insurer's obligation to continue paying Statutory Benefits ceases, and it is at this time that the workers' compensation claim of the injured worker will be finalised.

Statutory Benefits

If you are injured in the course of your work, then pursuant to Queensland legislation, you are entitled to make a claim for workers’ compensation to be paid Statutory Benefits. These benefits include payment of all medical and rehabilitation expenses relating to your injury and your wages whilst you are recovering from your injury and unable to work. The legislation in Queensland which provides this right or entitlement to workers is the Workers’ Compensation & Rehabilitation Act 2003. The workers’ compensation scheme in Queensland is a “no fault” scheme, that is, the worker has the right to claim whether the injury was caused by the employer’s negligence or wrongful act or omission or not. But a worker who is injured at work, will not always have a Common Law Claim, that is, a claim that he can pursue in the court for Common Law Damages. To have a Common Law Claim, there must be some fault on the part of the employer resulting in the worker’s injury occurring in the course of employment.

Statutory Claim

A Statutory Claim is only available where legislation has specifically provided the right to such a claim. An example of this is a workers’ compensation claim where the Workers’ Compensation & Rehabilitation Act 2003 permits injured workers in Queensland to claim Statutory benefits (medical costs and wages) when they are injured at work, whether the injury was caused by the employer’s negligence or wrongful act or omission or not. It is a “no fault scheme”. But a worker who is injured at work, will not always have a Common Law Claim, that is, a claim that he can pursue in the court for Common Law Damages. To have a Common Law Claim, there must be some fault on the part of the employer resulting in the worker’s injury occurring in the course of employment.


T


Time Limits For Lodging Personal Injury Claims

In Queensland there are time limits that apply to making a claim for personal injuries. The time limits are very strict and are set by Statute. In Queensland, if you are claiming for injuries sustained in a motor vehicle accident or you are making a public liability claim (eg. in a slip and fall incident at a shopping centre), you must place the party you consider to be at fault on notice of your claim within 9 months of the injury occurring, or within 1 month of your consultation with a solicitor in relation to your claim, whichever occurs first. If you miss these time limits you have to provide good reasons why you should be permitted to proceed with your claim.

Where you are making a claim for compensation for a work injury in Queensland, you have 6 months from the date of the incident or becoming aware of your injury to make your workers' compensation claim.

However, for all personal injury claims in Queensland, you have an overall time limit of 3 years from the date of the negligent or wrongful act or omission that caused your injury, to bring your claim for personal injury and if you miss this time limit, unless there are very exceptional circumstances, you will lose all rights to claim whatsoever. However, to ensure that your personal injury claim is protected when your 3 year time limit expires, there are a number of legal processes that must be complied with and these steps do take some time to complete.

For example, in a work injury claim where you are suing your employer for compensation and damages for injuries sustained in the course of your work, you need to obtain a Notice of Assessment from the workers' compensation insurer setting out the Degree of Permanent Impairment sustained from each injury sustained in the work event, prior to serving a Notice of Claim for Damages on your employer and the workers' compensation insurer, in order to protect your work injury claim. Applying for assessment of your injuries by the workers' compensation insurer, having your injuries undergo assessment by medical experts to determine the Degree of Permanent Impairment, and issuing of the Notice of Assessment along with the preparation and delivery of the Notice of Claim for Damages, all takes time.  All of this needs to be done, and compliance (or waiver of compliance) granted by the workers' compensation insurer following receipt of the Notice of Claim for Damages, prior to the 3 year period of limitation expiring.

As you can therefore see - it is extremely important that you take steps to pursue your claim and to protect your right to claim, as soon as possible. If you delay too long, you may not be in a position to take the necessary steps to protect your claim prior to the 3 year limitation date lapsing.

And in cases where your injury has occurred over a long period of time, it is imperative that you take action to pursue your personal injury claim immediately you become aware of your injury. This is because the 3 year time period commences from the date the negligent or wrongful acts or omissions that caused your injury began occurring (e.g. where you suffer a back injury as a result of unsafe work practices over a long period of time, then the 3 year period starts to run from when you were first subjected to those unsafe practices).  In most cases of injury occurring over a long period of time, the time limit for bringing a claim is reduced to 12 months from the date you actually become aware of your injury.

It is also important to point out that where your claim arises from injury sustained at work, in Queensland, even though legislation states that when making a personal injury claim you have 3 years in which to bring your claim, amendments to the Workers' Compensation & Rehabilitation Act 2003 applying to work injuries occurring over the period 15 October 2013 to 30 January 2015, have acted to seemingly reduce this time limit for work injuries occurring during that period. Under those amendments, if you were hurt at work in the period 15 October 2013 to 30 January 2015, then you really do need to take steps to bring your Common Law Claim within 2.5 years of your injury occurring, to be sure that your right to claim is protected.  And, similarly, in cases of injury occurring from unsafe work practices over a long period of time, this legislation also acts to reduce the time limit from 12 months of becoming aware of the injury as indicated above, to 6 months of becoming so aware. 

If your work injury occurred at any time outside the period 15 October 2013 to 30 January 2015, then you still have the 3 year limitation period in which to pursue your claim. And in cases where work injury is sustained on and after 31 January 2015, then your limitation period may be extended to a date 6 months following receipt of your Notice of Assessment, where you have requested your injury be assessed for impairment prior to your 3 year limitation period expiring.  As you can see, the legislation applying to work injury claims is very complex, so if you have been injured at work, you really should speak to The Personal Injury Lawyers about your work injury as soon as possible to ensure that you are not missing your limitation date for bringing your claim.

In motor accident claims, you have the overall limitation date of 3 years applying to such claims, however, to ensure your claim is properly protected, prior to the 3 year limitation date expiring, you must comply with a number of quite time consuming procedural requirements set out in the Motor Accident Insurance Act 1994. If you don't do so, then you may lose all rights to bring your claim.   And in the case of a motor vehicle accident where you do not know the identity of the vehicle at fault, then the time limit for bringing your claim is much stricter indeed. In such case, you need to serve on the Nominal Defendant, the government body that steps in to act as the CTP insurer in claims where the vehicle at fault is not identified, a compliant Notice of Claim within 9 months of the accident occurring. If you do not do so then you will be statute barred from bringing any claim in the future. This means you will lose all right to claim if you do not provide the Notice of Accident Claim form, in its correct form and properly completed as required by the legislation, to the Nominal Defendant within that 9 month period post-accident. So the time limit in an accident where one of the vehicles at fault cannot be identified, is extremely short, and also very strict.  


W


Workcover Queensland or Workers' Compensation Insurer

WorkCover Queensland is the workers'compensation insurer established by the Queensland Government to provide workers' compensation benefits (Statutory Benefits)for workers who are injured in the course of their employment in Queensland, and insurance coverage for the employers of such workers. WorkCover Queensland was originally established under the Workcover Queensland Act 1996, but since the repeal of that legislation in 2003 it now has its foundations in the Workers' Compensation & Rehabilitation Act 2003. WorkCover Queensland is a quasi-governmental body set up specifically to provide assistance to injured workers in Queensland and to ensure that employers are able to meet compensation entitlements to their injured workers. You can find more information about WorkCover Queensland if you go to its website at www.workcoverqld.com.au.

However, WorkCover Queensland is not the only workers' compensation insurer in Queensland. There are also what are termed "Self-Insurer" workers' compensation schemes in Queensland. These are usually very large organisations with the capacity to meet the expense of running their own workers' compensation schemes under the relevant workers' compensation legislation in Queensland. For a list of workers' compensation self-insurers in Queensland go to the website of the workers' compensation scheme Regulator in Queensland, Qcomp at www.qcomp.qld.gov.au.

Workers' Compensation Benefits or WorkCover Benefits

If you are injured in the course of your work, then pursuant to Queensland legislation, you are entitled to make a claim for workers’ compensation to be paid Statutory Benefits. These benefits include:

  • Payment of all medical and rehabilitation expenses relating to your injury;
  • Payment for care and assistance;
  • Wages whilst you are recovering from your injury and unable to work;
  • A lump sum compensation payment at the end of your workers' compensation claim (Note however that it is extremely important that you do not respond to any offer of lump sum compensation from the workers' compensation insurer unless you have obtained legal advice as acceptance of a lump sum compensation payment can result in you losing all rights to pursue Common Law Damages for your injuries). 

The legislation in Queensland which provides this right or entitlement to workers is the Workers’ Compensation & Rehabilitation Act 2003. The workers’ compensation scheme in Queensland is a “no fault” scheme, that is, the worker has the right to claim whether the injury was caused by the employer’s negligence or wrongful act or omission or not. But a worker who is injured at work, will not always have a Common Law Claim, that is, a claim that he can pursue in the court for Common Law Damages. To have a Common Law Claim, there must be some fault on the part of the employer resulting in the worker’s injury occurring in the course of employment.

Workers’ Compensation Claim

If you are injured in the course of your work, then pursuant to Queensland legislation, you are entitled to make a claim for workers’ compensation to be paid Statutory Benefits. These benefits include payment of all medical and rehabilitation expenses relating to your injury and your wages whilst you are recovering from your injury and unable to work. The legislation in Queensland which provides this right or entitlement to workers is the Workers’ Compensation & Rehabilitation Act 2003. The workers’ compensation scheme in Queensland is a “no fault” scheme, that is, the worker has the right to claim whether the injury was caused by the employer’s negligence or wrongful act or omission or not. But a worker who is injured at work, will not always have a Common Law Claim, that is, a claim that he can pursue in the court for Common Law Damages. To have a Common Law Claim, there must be some fault on the part of the employer resulting in the worker’s injury occurring in the course of employment.

Worthwhile Pursuing

When we refer to a claim being worthwhile pursuing, we are referring to whether your personal injury claim is of such sufficient value compensation-wise, that it is commercially viable for you to pursue given the legal costs and outlays that would be involved in pursuing your claim.

Wrongful Act or Omission

A wrongful act is the term given to an act that is either negligent or it is purposefully undertaken, causing injury to another. A wrongful omission is where a party negligently fails to take action or purposefully fails to take action, resulting in injury to another.