Authorised medico-legal evidence providers

To assist a claimant's recovery, or to help resolve a medical issue arising in a CTP claim, it may be necessary for the claimant or insurer, to organise for one or more health practitioners to examine a claimant and prepare medico-legal reports, or give medico-legal evidence before the Dispute Resolution Service (DRS) or a Court.

Motor Accidents on and after 1 December 2017

Under the new CTP scheme, which applies in relation to motor accidents on and from 1 December 2017, there are restrictions on health practitioners who may give evidence in court and other dispute resolution proceedings in relation to a ‘medical matter’.

For injuries caused by motor accidents occurring before 1 December 2017, these statutory restrictions on the giving of evidence do not apply.

Medical matters

‘Medical matters’ include the following:

  • the degree of permanent impairment of an injured person that has resulted from injury caused by a motor accident
  • whether treatment or care is reasonable and necessary in the circumstance or relates to an injury caused by a motor accident
  • whether treatment or care after 26 weeks will improve recovery
  • whether the injury is a minor injury, as defined by the Act
  • the degree of impairment of earning capacity of an injured person that has resulted from injury caused by the motor accident.

Under the new CTP scheme evidence given by a health practitioner (in a report or orally at an assessment conference or Court hearing) in relation to a ‘medical matter’ may only be given by:

  • an injured person’s treating health practitioner, or
  • a health practitioner authorised by the Motor Accident Guidelines to give evidence in the proceedings

Authorised health practitioners

The motor accident guidelines authorise the following health practitioners:

  • a practitioner who the parties agree to prepares a joint medico-legal report
  • suitably qualified health practitioners appointed by the Authority

Conducting examinations

When conducting an examination and/or preparing a medico-legal report the following should be considered:

1. Relevant information

In order to examine the injured person and/or prepare a medico-legal report, the health practitioner should be provided with all the relevant information including reports from treating health practitioners, investigations, test results, and any other relevant information.

2. Supporting the injured person

Medico-legal examinations can be difficult for claimants, especially if more than one is required. This stress and the costs incurred can be reduced if the parties involved:

  • agree to a joint medico-legal examination of the  injured person
  • ensure the health practitioner selected is suitably qualified  for the injuries or issues being considered
  • are considerate about the time and location of a medico-legal examinations taking into account a claimant’s needs

3. Neuropsychological medico-legal examinations

Parties arranging neuropsychological medico-legal examinations for an injured person with a traumatic brain injury should:

  • ensure scheduling medico-legal examinations does not disrupt the claimant's ongoing rehabilitation planning
  • inform the other party if a neuropsychological medico-legal examination is planned
  • use the guidelines for neuropsychological medico-legal examinations of children and adults with traumatic brain injury, and
  • use the neuropsychological medico-legal examinations notification (NAN) form.