Motor accidents bulletin - May 2020

Motor accidents disputes process streamlined for customers - digital portal launched

SIRA has launched its new digital disputes portal for motor accidents disputes, making dispute resolution as easy and transparent as possible for all parties involved in a dispute. The enhanced dispute resolution experience will give all parties to a dispute access to real-time status updates, in-system communication, and more efficient dispute resolution.  

The Dispute Resolution Services (DRS) manages the resolution of Compulsory Third Party (CTP) motor accidents disputes and processes over 12,000 motor accidents disputes a year. The DRS is established to provide a transparent, fair, timely and independent resolution services to disputes in the CTP personal injury scheme. 

The digital portal, developed in consultation with stakeholders, will assist to make the process more streamlined for stakeholders involved in a dispute.  

Key features of the portal include:

  • A one-stop-shop to upload key documents related to disputes
  • Real-time dispute claim tracking online, including instant notification
  • Applications can now be lodged in under 20 minutes, a quarter of the time than previously, reducing processing time by up to 60%
  • Streamlined forms to complete, with simpler language

The digital portal replaces our current manual and paper-based systems. Streamlining processes and cutting red tape is important for all of our customers. The portal is one of many initiatives that are being implemented to support those as part of SIRA’s digital engagement strategy.

Further information about the portal, and legislative requirements can be found here.

CTP Insurer Claims Experience and Customer Feedback Comparison Report March 2020

The third issue of the CTP Insurer Claims Experience and Customer Feedback Comparison Report is now published on SIRA’s website.

This report compares insurers in the NSW CTP scheme on a range of evidence-based indicators which measures insurer performance over the course of an injured person’s claims journey. The data will help customers make meaningful comparisons between insurers. People injured in motor accidents may also benefit from knowing what to expect from the insurer managing their claim.

The report includes the following measures:

  • The number of statutory benefits claims accepted by insurers
  • How quickly insurers pay statutory benefits
  • The outcome of claim decisions reviewed by insurers through the insurer’s internal review unit
  • The number and type of compliments and complaints about insurers
  • The number and type of issues escalated to SIRA’s Enforcement and Prosecutions team

View the report here

The CTP insurer claims experience and customer feedback comparison results will be published each quarter.

JobCover6 - guidance material available on SIRA website

The JobCover6 program helps people recovering from a motor vehicle accident (CTP claim) locate suitable work where ongoing employment cannot be secured with a new employer during the COVID-19 period. The program supports employers to offer employment to a person recovering from an injury from 12 weeks up to 6 months with a financial incentive up to $10,400 and protection against the costs of changes to the existing injury for up to two years.

To access JobCover6 an injured person should contact their CTP insurer to discuss eligibility requirements. The insurer will review the person and their new employers eligibility before making an application to SIRA. The person is responsible for notifying the insurer and employer if eligibility for the program changes.

JobCover6 has been developed in recognition of the economic and business impacts of COVID-19. Eligibility requirements and further guidance information can be found here.

$12.6 million support package for taxi operators

The NSW Government has announced it will fund a $12.6 million support package for taxi operators who are affected by COVID-19 and the NSW public health orders.

The package will provide support for taxis to continue to operate in COVID-19 restricted environment. The support will cover the operating costs of taxis, which includes CTP insurance, vehicle registration and other on road costs.

The support package provides eligible owners of Wheelchair Accessible Taxis and currently operational taxis with a maximum subsidy of $2,900 per vehicle.

Service NSW will be managing the assessment and payment of the financial assistance. Eligible taxi operators will be able to make a claim for assistance through the Service NSW website or at Service NSW Centres.

Further information about accessing the support package can be found here.

Authorised Health Practitioner appointments due to expire 30 June 2020

In the 2017 NSW CTP scheme, medical evidence is only admissible in court and other dispute resolution proceedings if it is given by the treating practitioner of the injured person or a health practitioner authorised by SIRA. In December 2019, new eligibility criteria and terms of appointment for authorised health practitioners were published in the Motor Accident Guidelines, for appointments on or after 1 December 2019.

All authorised health practitioners appointed prior to December 2019 have recently been reminded that their current period of appointment is due to expire on 30 June 2020.

With the increased number of changes to SIRA’s published list over the coming months, this is a timely reminder that those seeking to make a referral for medicolegal services should check the list before making each referral. This will ensure that the health practitioner selected is appropriately authorised to give evidence.

Training videos for certain allied health professionals issuing certificate of capacity/fitness

Treating physiotherapists and psychologists can now provide certification of an injured person’s ability to work as a result of amendments to the Motor Accident Guidelines from 17 March 2020.The amendments, are intended to relieve pressure on general practitioners and the overall health system during the COVID-19 pandemic.

SIRA has published new videos on SIRA’s LinkedIn and YouTube channel on certifying capacity/fitness for work for treating physiotherapists and psychologists. It is an introductory resource for treating physiotherapists and psychologists. You can find more information on this topic here.

Contact SIRA for support

Our SIRA team is here to support you at this challenging time. You can contact us Monday to Friday between 8:30 am and 5 pm.

CTP Assist

Phone: 1300 656 919


Dispute Resolution Service (DRS)

Phone: 1800 347 788