Fatal Car Accident
What Compensation Are You Entitled To After A Fatal Car Accident In NSW?
We have prepared a comprehensive guide for those who have lost a family member or partner in a car accident, so you are able to receive the compensation you are entitled to.
There is a staggering amount of fatal car accidents on NSW roads every year. These accidents cause massive amounts of grief and trauma for family members of the deceased as well as any survivors of the accident.
Are You Eligible To Claim Compensation?
If you have lost a family member you may be eligible to claim compensation if you fit any of the following criteria’s:
- The deceased person’s husband, wife or de facto partner
- One of the deceased person’s children
- The deceased person’s parent or guardian
- The deceased person’s siblings, including half-sibling and step-siblings
These compensation claims are not limited to fatal car accidents, but as well applicable to fatal accidents in any situation whether it be in a bicycle accident, accident at sea or in the air, you are entitled to claim compensation if there was a negligent party who caused the accident.
Who Was At Fault To Cause The Car Accident?
The amount of compensation that will be paid out depends on who was at fault in causing the accident. Whether there was a negligent party who is fully to blame or both drivers were at fault, you are still eligible to claim compensation. There are many different situations which will affect how much compensation you are entitled to, including:
Another Party Was At Fault
If the deceased was in no fault at all and the accident was caused by the negligence of another driver, you are eligible for compensation for your loss. Whether the deceased was a pedestrian, passenger or cyclist sharing the road, you are still entitled to claim compensation due to negligence.
The Deceased Was Somewhat At Fault
If the deceased was partly responsible for the crash, you may still be entitled to compensation, just at a lesser amount than if they were in no fault at all. Contributing factors of whether someone was at fault or not include, although are not limited to:
- Driving faster than the legal speed limit
- Driving while intoxicated due to the use of alcohol or drugs
- Knowingly riding with an intoxicated driver
- Not wearing a seat belt while in the car
The Deceased Was Fully Responsible For The Accident
If the deceased was driving in a negligent matter and caused the accident themselves, then there are more often than not, no appropriate grounds for family members to claim compensation.
The Accident Was No One’s Fault
There are also instances where accidents occur due to no fault of either party but rather by factors beyond anyone’s control, leaving you eligible for compensation. Examples of these blameless accidents are:
- Motor accidents which are caused by animals on the road
- Motor accidents which are caused by obstructive trees or bushes which may have fallen
- Motor accidents which were caused by illness or involuntary reactions, this includes heart attacks and any diagnosed medical condition causing impairments such as seizures.
The Deceased Was A Child Passenger Can You Claim Compensation?
If the deceased was a minor under the age of sixteen and a resident of NSW at the time of the event, compensation is available for the parent or legal guardian regardless of how the accident occurred or who was at fault.
What Does The Compensation Claim Cover?
You are eligible to claim compensation for the following after a fatal accident in NSW:
- Any ambulance or hospital bills before the deceased passed
- Funeral Costs, Including Cremation
- The loss of financial support that the deceased was providing for their family before death
- Loss of services or duties that the deceased provided to the family, such as childcare services
- Loss of their income prior to death
- Rehabilitation costs for those who are psychologically affected by the loss of a family member.
What Steps Need To Be Taken To Claim Compensation
Every car owner in Australia is legally required to have third party insurance. This covers the cost of accident towards others in situations such as car accidents. If you are the victim of a car accident, you are covered by the person at fault’s third party insurance; therefore you should direct your claim to the insurance company which covers the driver.
What Compensation Am I Entitled To After An Accident?
The appropriate requirements need to be met before you can claim compensation on the deceased behalf, which include:
- Reporting the accident as soon as you can to the NSW police and recording the event number
- Collecting all relevant insurance and registration details of the negligent driver
- Keep records of all expenses including medical bills, funeral costs and other relevant documentation and invoices that you wish to be compensated for.
In some cases, this information is not as accessible to you, for example a registration number of a hit and run driver. This is why your first step should be to contact the police who will take care of any information that you are unable to obtain. Even in situations where the negligent party is not found, the Nominal Defense Scheme allows you to claim compensation.
Who Is Responsible In Paying The Compensation That Is Due?
Every driver on New South Wales roads must be covered by third party insurance to cover any compensation in claims like your own. Therefore all claims are directed to the insurance company of the negligent driver who will negotiate compensation.
How Long Do You Have To Make A Claim?
The sooner, the better. When a loved one is lost it can be extremely difficult, dealing with the grief and emotional distress which follows, although financial burdens are the last thing you need on top of that. The sooner that you claim compensation the better your chances become for a full and fair payout.
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