Am I entitled to medical expenses after a car accident?

Published 10 Oct 2018

If you have been injured in a motor vehicle accident, you may be eligible to receive compensation. However, there are guidelines in place that will affect the outcome of your claim. Understanding compulsory third-party (CTP) insurance and when it applies is the first step.

CTP insurance guidelines

Compulsory third-party insurance is required throughout Australia for anyone who owns a motor vehicle. You purchase CTP insurance when you register your vehicle so that every person has it.

If you are injured in an accident, and the accident was found to be the fault of someone other than you, you would be entitled to receive compensation to cover the costs of your injuries from the other party's CTP insurance.

However, if the accident is your fault, you will not receive compensation from the other party's CTP insurance, and must rely on other forms of insurance for your medical expenses.

Your own CTP insurance only covers other people's costs of injuries if an accident is your fault.

The ACT makes it clear that the reason this type of insurance is compulsory is that if you were at fault for injuring someone in a crash, you would be personally responsible to cover the costs. If you failed to pay, that injured person wouldn't have any way to cover their expenses.

Who is the third party?

Under ACT legislation, the parties are as follows:

  • First party: the person at fault for the accident, whose CTP insurance would cover the third party's injuries.
  • Second party: the CTP insurer of the first party.
  • Third party: the person who is injured in the motor vehicle accident.

How do I get compensation after an injury?

According to the ACT, you must be able to prove the other party is at fault to receive any compensation for your injuries. If the other party does not outright admit fault, you will need to initiate court proceedings against them so that negligence can be established.

If fault was partially yours, you can still try to get compensation for injuries but the amount awarded may be lower. You cannot make a claim if:

  • You were the only one at fault.
  • No one was at fault (for example, hitting an animal on the road).

Hit and run accidents do happen, so if the person at fault flees the scene and you sustain injuries from the crash, you can still claim compensation from the Nominal Defendant, according to the ACT.

If you believe you are eligible to receive motor vehicle accident compensation to cover your injuries, we can help you make your claim. We offer free consultations here at Gerard Malouf & Partners Compensation, Medical Negligence & Will Dispute Lawyers, so get in touch with us right away.