Changes to the compensation entitlements of victims of motor vehicle accidents
On 19 August 2013, the government withdrew the Bill from Parliament. The Bill had been vehemently opposed by numerous organisations, representing motorists and motorcyclists, pedestrians and bicycle riders, the medical profession, the legal profession, and others. It was clear to the government in the end that it could not get the Bill passed by the Upper House, where the Labor Party, the Greens, and the cross – benches would not guarantee their support of the Bill in its present form.
The Bill in that form would have had devastating effects upon the compensation entitlements of innocent victims of motor vehicle accidents. Instead of receiving full compensation for past and future loss of wages, compensation would generally be paid at 80% of pre – accident earnings (up to a maximum amount of $1,838.70 per week) and only for five years. Compensation for past and future medical expenses would also generally be capped at five years, and there would be no compensation for care and assistance provided free – of – charge by family members or friends.
There was significant public opposition to the Bill, with many people complaining about the Bill to their local State Member of Parliament.
However, in its 19 August 2013 press release advising that it had withdrawn the Bill from Parliament, the government continued to claim that the current CTP scheme was broken and that green slip premiums would continue to rise unless the scheme was fixed. It is interesting to note however that the government eventually did not guarantee that its Bill would have reduced green slip premiums in the long term.
There is little doubt that the government will again attempt to amend the CTP legislation in the near future. However, for the current time, CTP laws remain as they have since the Motor Accidents Compensation Act was introduced in 1999.
If you would like any further information about this article, or if you would like to discuss CTP entitlements that you may have, please do not hesitate to contact your closest Turner Freeman office.