A driver, passenger, pedestrian, or cyclist injured in a transport accident may make a claim with the TAC for compensation. A transport accident is defined under the legislation as an incident caused by the driving of a motor vehicle, railway train or tram. Motor vehicles include cars, trucks, buses, and motorcycles.
The TAC may pay compensation for those injured in a transport accident, or to a person affected by someone dying in a transport accident. In order to assign compensation, the accident must meet the transport accident criteria defined in the Transport Accident Act 1986, and the person making the application must be eligible to receive compensation under the Act.
If a person has met the criteria under the Transport Accident Act 1986, the TAC may award compensation for medical treatment, hospital costs, and any other medical expenses from the accident.
The TAC may also provide support services such as rehabilitation services, disability services, therapy services, income assistance, lump sum compensation, loss of earnings benefits, and any other services the Commission deems appropriate.
It is crucial to not wait too long to make a claim with the TAC and to seek legal advice as soon as practicable. State and Federal laws have imposed limitation periods, which is the time frame within which you can lodge a claim.
If you have been injured in a transport accident, you must lodge a claim with the TAC within one year of the accident or within one year of the injury manifesting itself. The usual one-year limitation period may be extended to three years if the TAC is satisfied there were reasonable grounds for the delay. Claims however cannot be lodged after expiry of the three-year period.
The TAC will also require completion of a Claim for Compensation Summary Form and an Authority to Release Information Form.
When the TAC has received all information, they will make a decision within 21 days of the application being lodged unless they request further particulars. If the TAC requests a response from the person making the application, this response must be given within 28 days of the request.
If you have been in an accident with an unidentified vehicle or an uninsured vehicle, then benefits can only be claimed through the TAC if the Commission were put on notice in writing, setting out the details of the accident and details of any injuries inflicted.