Information for legal professionals to help them understand their role in the new CTP scheme from 1 December 2017.
The Motor Accident Injuries Act 2017 commences 1 December 2017, marking the beginning of a new compulsory third party (CTP) Green Slip scheme designed to better support people injured on NSW roads.
Under the new scheme most injured people, regardless of fault, are entitled to claim up to 26 weeks of defined benefits for weekly income payments, medical and treatment costs, and commercial attendant care. Exceptions to this are listed under Division 3.5 of the Act (e.g. where the injured driver has committed a serious driving offence).
People with minor injuries (soft tissue and/or minor psychological injuries) or those who were wholly or mostly at fault in the accident are limited to 26 weeks of weekly payments of statutory benefits.
The maximum weekly payment period for injured people whose injury is not minor and who were not the person mostly at fault in the accident, is up to 104 weeks unless the injured person has a pending damages claim.
An injured person who has a pending claim for damages may claim statutory benefits for loss of earnings or earning capacity up to 156 weeks, if the degree of permanent impairment as a result of the injury is not greater than 10%; and up to 260 weeks if the person has a pending damages claim and the degree of permanent impairment as a result of the injury is greater than 10%.
The Motor Accident Injuries Regulation 2017 includes costs regulations for both statutory benefits claims and damages claims.
As statutory benefits may be provided for the first 26 weeks regardless of fault, the Motor Accident Injuries Regulation 2017 provides for legal costs in respect of some, but not all statutory benefits disputes.
Medical and treatment benefits and commercial attendant care are paid as statutory benefits and are not payable in any lump sum compensation in damages claims.
Injured people can seek assistance from the State Insurance Regulatory Authority’s (SIRA) new service, CTP Assist, and lodge disputes with SIRA’s Dispute Resolution Services.
Lawyers may continue to represent people in their common law claim for damages.
The new scheme is not retrospective. Anyone injured in a motor accident before 1 December 2017 will continue to claim in accordance with the legislation that applied at the time of the accident. This means there will be different CTP schemes operating at the same time until all claims under previous Acts are finalised. Claimants under previous legislation may still require legal advice and assistance when seeking damages under common law.
For more information lawyers should refer to: