Mr RFC was involved in a motor-vehicle accident where his car was struck from behind when he was stationary at a set of lights. He was the driver of the motor vehicle. The impact exacerbated and aggravated pre-existing injuries following a workplace accident more than a decade ago.
The injury prevented him to perform his duties as a scientist, particularly in relation to holding his head in a static position to work on a computer or with microscopes and to sit or stand for long periods of time. This also prevented him from driving long distances and affected his normal activities in his home life.
Mr RFC had completed a doctorate to further his qualifications for the purpose of seeking a promotion in his hospital to which he was already in the acting position of a Senior Scientist. Prior to the accident he had already submitted an application for an open position of Senior Scientist. There was every reason for him to receive confirmation of the promotion but for this motor-vehicle accident. The accident caused him to take extensive sick leave as well as annual leave when the sick leave had run out for his treatment, and for him to recover. Even after his condition had resolved to the point of stability, he still needed to revert to light duties.
Because of the changes in his condition, he suffered a loss in opportunity which would be projected into the future.
Mr RFC was initially assessed by an independent medical examiner to have sustained an injury in excess of 10% whole person impairment. This was disputed by the insurer whose assessment was that the aggravation or exacerbation of the injuries to his neck and back had resolved and that his assessment should be 0%. The dispute was referred to the Medical Assessment Service, where at first instance, he was assessed as suffering an injury equivalent to 0% whole person impairment. The assessment was then reviewed. Although the assessment returned again with a 0% assessment, there was confirmation that there remained a residual exacerbation of the pre-existing condition which under the guidelines was not assessable. This was extremely important because it still meant that Mr RFC was entitled to his reasonably incurred medical and treatment expenses, expenses in relation to his domestic assistance and care, both paid and gratuitous, and his past and future economic loss.
It is through these strategic arguments that Gerard Malouf and Partners were able to obtain such a substantial result for Mr RFC despite the assessment of his injuries being assessed and confirmed to be 0% whole person impairment in accordance with the assessment guidelines.
This is another example of how the experience of Gerard Malouf and Partners has shown through for this client.