Road Accident & TAC advice from a Road Accidents Lawyer

By Anastasia Eleftheriou, Principal Lawyer, Accredited Specialist in Injury Law department, Gordon Legal

If you or someone you care about is injured in a road accident, life can be turned upside down. The ability to focus on your recovery can be difficult when you are faced with trauma, medical expenses, and financial uncertainty.

We are here to assist you through this challenging time by obtaining compensation from the Transport Accident Commission (TAC). The TAC will pay compensation to road users who are injured in a motor vehicle, car, train, tram or bus, or as a cyclist, motorcyclist or a pedestrian. The TAC also pays compensation if someone dies as a result of a road accident.

We know when you’ve been in a car accident (or any road accident) that going through the accident compensation claims process can seem daunting or overwhelming. At our law firm, we have experienced, friendly professionals with a comprehensive understanding of the TAC’s complexities, and the expertise needed to achieve the compensation you deserve.


Should I seek advice from a lawyer after a car accident?

If you have suffered injuries as a result of a motor vehicle or road accident, it may be worthwhile seeking legal advice as to what your entitlements are. The TAC can cover you for a range of benefits under their scheme including medical expenses, loss of wages (known as loss of income) and at times possible lump sum claims for compensation. 


What should I do if I think I have a claim?
  • Report the accident to the police or public transport operator
  • Obtain the details of the other driver 
  • Obtain the details of any witnesses 
  • Take photographs of the damage to all vehicles involved in the accident on your smartphone 
  • Take photographs on your smartphone of your location, the resting position of all vehicles involved in the accident and your surrounds
  • Contact the TAC to lodge a claim for any injuries you have sustained in the accident 
  • Make a free appointment with one of our TAC lawyers so you get expert advice on what your entitlements are – obligation-free


How much do car accidents usually settle for?

Depending on the nature of your injuries, what treatment you have received and whether you can establish some sort of fault as a result of the accident, the amounts of compensation can vary from a lump sum impairment claim to a claim at Common Law, which can compensate an injured person for pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, medical expenses and economic loss. 


How do attorneys get paid for car accidents?

At Gordon Legal, we operate on a no-win/no fee basis with our clients. What this essentially means is that we will not charge you for any professional fees if you have not received a successful outcome for your matter. If you are successful in your matter, you may be liable to pay some fees. In some instances, the TAC also makes a contribution to your legal costs if you are successful in your matter.


Do I have to be injured in a car accident to take legal action?

If you have suffered injuries as a result of a road accident and your matter does not resolve informally with TAC, in some instances you may need to issue court proceedings and take legal action. At Gordon Legal, we endeavour our best to resolve your matter without the requirement of issuing court proceedings or taking legal action. This may involve us informally meeting and discussing your matter with the TAC prior to the issuing of any court proceedings. 


Does being insured protect me from having to pursue legal action after a car accident?

The TAC scheme can cover you regardless of whether you have paid your car insurance or not. You can still be entitled to benefits if you are injured in a transport or road accident.

The TAC can also pay benefits to an eligible client injured in a transport or road accident involving a registered and/or insured motor vehicle on private land.


How do I lodge a claim to the TAC?

If you were taken to hospital for an injury following a transport or motor vehicle accident, the hospital may have completed and lodged a claim on your behalf. If you signed a claim form then you can expect that your TAC claim has been lodged by the hospital and submitted to the TAC. 

If you were not taken to hospital or did not fill out a claim form, you can make your TAC Claim by contacting the TAC directly on 1300 654 329, which incurs local call costs, or on 1800 332 556, which is a toll-free number for anyone outside the Melbourne metropolitan area.


What happens if I am involved in a car accident interstate?

If your road accident occurred interstate in a Victorian registered vehicle, you are still eligible to lodge a TAC claim.


How long do I have to lodge a claim?

The law requires you to lodge a claim strictly within 12 months from the date of your road accident. If your car accident claim is lodged outside the 12-month period, the TAC has the discretion to consider your claim if it is lodged within three years. 

To pursue a lump sum claim for an impairment benefit, you have six years from the date of your accident. To pursue a lump sum claim for a Common Law claim you have six years from the date of your accident.

If you receive an adverse decision from the TAC that you do not agree with, you have 12 months to appeal the decision. Examples of an adverse decision include the denial of your claim, denial or cessation of your entitlements to medical expenses and related expenses or income benefits, the rate or frequency of payments and the level of impairment determined.


What to do if this information applies to you

At Gordon Legal, we understand that road accidents are a personal issue.

For personalised and individual advice, we offer consultations to discuss your matter.

Please call Gordon Legal on (03) 9603 3000 or our Geelong office on (03) 5225 1600 to speak with a member of our team.

Given the current environment, we are providing consultations over the phone or via video conferencing platforms.

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