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No Win - No Charge

Car Accident Lawyers Queensland

    Car Accident in Queensland?

    Accidents involving vehicles are an unfortunate part of life in our modern world. In Queensland, you are able to make a Compulsory Third Party (CTP) claim if you are injured in an accident that is the fault (total or partial) of the driver, owner or another person insured under a CTP policy.

    The claim is made against the CTP insurer of the vehicle that caused the crash. You can still make a CTP claim if you were partially at fault.

    At Zaparas, our experience and expertise with motor vehicle accidents lets us work with you to establish the full extent of your claim and the benefits that you’re entitled to receive. We understand that when you’re injured, your family and friends can feel the impact of your accident too. That’s why we will always find out exactly what we can do to help make things better for you in the short, medium and long term.

    We’ll focus on the positive outcomes that are possible and on getting you the benefits and compensation you’re entitled to.

    Car Accident in Queensland

    Thankfully, the majority of road accidents that occur are minor. Some of these result in no damage at all, while others may simply require minor repairs. However, sometimes more serious accidents occur. These may result in injuries which have an impact on your ability to work or enjoy life with your family. 

    When an accident is the fault of another person (be it the driver of another vehicle or the one you were in) you can make a claim against the Compulsory third party insurer of that person. Unfortunately the insurer won’t automatically offer to pay you all of your compensation entitlements. In these cases, you will want to retain the services of a skilled accident claim lawyer like those at Zaparas Lawyers. We will ensure that you receive fair compensation taking into account injuries, damages, lost wages and more.

    Part of the reason it is important to acquire the services of a knowledgeable accident lawyer is that there are so many processes and deadlines involved when making an at-fault car accident insurance claim. What’s more, these rules vary from state to state. Your traffic accident lawyers will help you navigate the legal requirements of the process. However, to give you a basic understanding, here are some of the most important things to consider after a car accident in Queensland.

    Compulsory Third Party (CTP) Scheme for Personal Injury

    Queensland has provided protection for parties injured in road accidents through their compulsory third party scheme. The CTP scheme is a common law ‘fault’ based one, where injured parties have access to a policy each driver must carry. This policy covers the driver’s unlimited liability for personal injury and related costs they may incur when they are found at fault for an accident.

    By law, when registering a vehicle a driver must acquire CTP insurance. This is good news if you are indeed injured in an accident. Those who do not have this type of insurance will be charged. This works in a complainant’s favour when they use legal means to receive compensation. Remember that you do not have to be the driver or occupant of a vehicle – pedestrians and cyclists can also make claims under the CTP scheme. 
     
    In cases where you are unable to identify the at-fault party or when the at-fault party is uninsured and doesn't have the means to pay out a legal settlement, you can still have your personal injury costs paid for. By naming the at-fault party as an unnamed ‘nominal defendant’, you will be able to access a special pool that compensates victims in these circumstances.

    There are important things to note about this type of insurance, however. Firstly, you must show that the driver in question was indeed at fault. If they are charged with a driving infraction, this will certainly help your case. However, a driver that broke no laws may still be at fault (e.g. a rear-end situation). By carefully documenting the scene, obtaining witness contacts, and with the help of your motor vehicle insurance lawyer, you can successfully prove that the other driver was at fault and therefore receive compensation for your injuries.

    It is extremely important to note that personal injury claims falling under the Motor Accident Insurance (MAI) Act (such as CTP claims) are held to a specific statute of limitations. While accidents occurring at work have a 3-year statute of limitations, CTP claims must be filed by the date of whichever of the following occurs sooner:

    •    9 months from the date of injury
    •    one month after a lawyer is consulted about making a claim

    Another important fact to note is that compulsory third party insurance only covers personal injury. No matter how egregious the damage to your vehicle may be, CTP does not cover this. If the at-fault party carries comprehensive or third party property insurance, their insurance will cover damages to others’ vehicles. However, these types of insurance are not compulsory and many choose not to carry these plans. If the at-fault party is not willing to reimburse you for damages out of their own pocket, your Queensland compensation lawyer at Zaparas Lawyers will begin legal proceedings in order to ensure you receive the appropriate remuneration.

    Damage Claims Process

    First, you’ll need to ensure you have the identity of the offending party. If this was not obtained at the scene, you can perform a search of the vehicle’s registration number through the Department of Transport and Main Roads or request the information from the police accident report.
     
    Your next step will be to assess the cost of repairs to your vehicle. Ensure you use a reputable, recognised repair shop and that their quote outlines both parts and labour costs. Obtaining multiple quotes and making a claim for the lowest one can help your case as it shows you are acting in good faith. 
     
    The next step is to send a letter of demand that outlines the specifics of the accident, the lowest quote, and the fact that the recipient of the letter is the at-fault party. You can also claim for associated costs (e.g. towing). If the car is a write-off, you can claim for what the car would have been valued at just before the accident minus any salvage payment you might receive for the wreck. Include a time period in which a reply agreeing to payment is expected (2 weeks – a month is reasonable).

    A copy should be sent to the at-fault party’s insurance company as well, and another copy kept for you. Offer to make your vehicle available to the insurance company for inspection, should they so desire. Even if you have sent your letter of demand electronically, it is recommended that physical copies, which must be signed for on receipt, are also sent.

    If no reply is received in the allotted time, your lawyer can then send a formal letter informing them that legal proceedings will begin on a set date unless an affirmative reply is received. If the at-fault party or the insurance company refuses payment, a letter saying legal proceedings are imminent can be sent out.

    The statute of limitations for property damage is considerably longer – 6 years. However, it is always advisable to make your claim as soon as possible. Old claims are not looked upon as favourably by the courts, and both witnesses and evidence may not be as strong as time passes. If you have recently been in an accident and are thinking of making any motor accident claim, you should seek advice from an injury and accident lawyer immediately.

    Queensland’s Best Compensation Lawyers

    The compensation law experts at Zaparas Lawyers are Queensland’s best. With over 40 years of experience in compensation and insurance law, they have the knowledge and skill to get you the compensation you deserve; whether for personal injury, property damage, or lost wages. We understand that legal costs can be a hurdle, so our ‘no win, no charge’ policy ensures there is no financial risk on your part. Visit us at one of our offices in Gold Coast or Brisbane, or contact us today.

    What we offer

    Workers Compensation Step 1
    Workers Compensation Step 2
    Workers Compensation Step 3
    Workers Compensation Step 4
    Workers Compensation Step 5

    FAQs

    What sort of benefits could you be eligible for?

    In Queensland, all claims for compensation are individually assessed. The compensation that is paid depends on the type and severity of your injury and your particular circumstances.

    Your solicitor will advise you on what you are entitled to claim. This can include:

    • treatment and rehabilitation expenses that are considered reasonable and appropriate
    • loss of income both past and future
    • future treatment expenses
    • general damages, meaning damages for pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life
    • the cost of care and support services (thresholds apply) 

    Help, I've been in a car accident, what should I do?

    If you or a loved one has been injured in a motor vehicle accident in Queensland, you should:

    1. Report the crash to the police
      The law requires that the driver, of a motor vehicle involved in a crash in which a person is injured, must report the crash, in person, at the nearest police station to where the crash occurred.
    2. Obtain the registration number of the vehicle that caused the crash
      To lodge a claim, you will require the registration number of the vehicle at fault. If multiple vehicles were involved in the crash, you will also need to obtain all their registration details and details of any witnesses.

    If you can’t identify a vehicle or discover it’s unregistered, and therefore uninsured, you can lodge your claim against the Nominal Defendant.

    The Nominal Defendant is a government body that assists in compensating people who are injured as a result of the negligent driving of unidentified or uninsured motor vehicles.

    If the accident was my fault, do I have any entitlements?

    There may be times when you are injured but cannot claim compensation. For example:

    • if you were totally at fault
    • no-one was at fault.

    If you are unable to claim compensation, you will need to rely on sick leave, Centrelink benefits, Medicare and the public health system unless you have other insurance policies such as income protection or private health insurance.

    If you have a serious personal injury and your motor accident occurred after 1 July 2016, you may be able to access treatment, care and support through the National Injury Insurance Scheme Queensland.

    How long do I have to make a MVA claim?

    There are strict timeframes for lodgement of your notice of claim under the Motor Accident Insurance Act 1994 Queensland Legislation.

    The notice must be given within three months if it is to be given to the nominal defendant because the motor vehicle cannot be identified.

    In any other case, it is whichever of the following dates is earlier:

    • within nine months of the motor vehicle crash or, if symptoms of the injury are not immediately apparent, the first appearance of symptoms of the injury
    • if you have a solicitor managing your claim, within one month of the first consultation with the solicitor.

    Your claim could be rejected if you lodge it outside the timeframes. It is therefore very important that you seek advice from a solicitor at the earliest opportunity after a motor vehicle accident.

    If you are under 18 years of age at the time of the crash, different timeframes apply. Timeframes to lodge a claim do not commence until the child turns 18.

    What should I do next?

    At Zaparas Lawyers, we understand that this can be quite a daunting process, so we are happy to assist you with the process of lodging a claim and advising you on your entitlements. Feel free to contact your local Queensland team and arrange your obligation free appointment.

    What should I bring to the appointment?

    Please bring all relevant documentation you have such as completed claim forms, letters from insurers, medical reports, radiological investigations and any other documents that may be relevant.

    English is my second language, are you able to provide an interpreter?

    Our firm has a diverse and multicultural team comprising of lawyers and law clerks who speak different languages including: Greek, Cantonese, Mandarin, Serbian, Croatian, Bosnian, Macedonian, Turkish and Singhalese. We also have a network of the very best interpreters who can attend interviews and appointments free of charge to our clients.

    How much will I pay in legal costs?

    When an injury is sustained, it is not only a traumatic and often life changing experience, it often causes great financial strain to the injured party and their family. This is why for 40 years Zaparas Lawyers has fought cases on a ‘No win, No charge’ basis.

    In simple terms, this means that you do not pay anything unless you win your case.

    Do You Need a Lawyer After a Car Accident?

    If there is any injury the answer to this question is a definite ‘yes.’ This also holds true if you may be partially or fully responsible for the accident. If you are the victim, a lawyer will ensure that you get the compensation you are entitled to and that you will not be paying for medical costs or repairs out of your own pocket 

    How Much Does a Lawyer Charge for a Car Accident?

    Unfortunately, up-front lawyer costs can be far too much for the average person. As a result, many people involved in accidents which were no fault of their own end up paying for their own medical care and repairs. At Zaparas Lawyers, we are a family firm and understand the need for individuals and families to avoid financial strain. That’s why we’ve instituted our ‘no win, no charge’ policy. If we do not obtain a judgement in your favour, we will not charge you for our services.

    How Long Do You Have to Get a Lawyer After a Car Accident?

    You should always obtain the services of a lawyer as soon as possible after an accident. Remember – the statute of limitations to file a personal injury claim under the CTP scheme is 9 months after your injury.

    Without the advice and expertise of a compensation lawyer, insurance companies often stall while leading you to think they are willing to work with you. Suddenly, the statute of limitations has expired, and they are then in a position to pay you the bare minimum – or nothing at all. By retaining one of our experienced lawyers, you can be sure a strong case will be built from the beginning, resulting in full and fair compensation for you.

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