ACT Claim – Client injured but returned to work

Published 13 Aug 2015

Ms SCF was involved in a motor vehicle accident on 13 June 2013. At the time of the accident, where she was a passenger, she was 17 years of age. The accident occurred at Echelon Drive and Drakeford Drive, Wanniassa in the Australian Capital Territory. She also resided in Canberra.

The motor vehicle accident claim needed to be claimed in accordance with Australian Capital Territory legislation.

There is a marked difference between the legislation governing motor vehicle accidents in New South Wales as compared to that of the Australian Capital Territory.

To ensure that Ms SCF was able to claim for all of her losses, three separate claim forms were needed to be completed with her.

The heads of damages to which Ms SCF was able to claim are the same as that in New South Wales with the Benefit that a claim for non-economic loss does not need to exceed any particular threshold. However, there are strict conditions in relation to legal costs when proceeding to Court.

Ms SCF at the time of the accident was a Barmaid. This required her to stand for long periods of time and to use a lot of her upper extremities repetitively. The Injuries, however, which included her neck, back, upper extremities and lower extremities prevented her from continuing this job efficiently.

She was, nevertheless, fortunate to have a friend who was a manager of a Liquor Distribution Business and was able to offer her a sedentary position. The work she now performed was of lighter duties and was able to receive a greater amount of remuneration for the work that she performed.

Ms SCF was independently assessed to have an injury equivalent to 14% Whole Person Impairment. Despite her injuries, she did not see her GP often, did not have time to see a specialist despite being referred to one and did not obtain any physiotherapy or other medical treatment. Although she was prescribed with pain and anti-inflammatory medication, she did not make payment for the same. She did say that she did require Panadol from time to time. This meant that her reasonably incurred medical and treatment expenses claim was negligible. The increase in her work also meant that there would be little to no claim for economic loss. With the background of limited medical attention and treatment, it would have been impossible to claim any domestic assistance and care for her.

Despite such a background, Gerard Malouf and Partners were capable of putting up an argument that Ms SCF would nevertheless suffer from a loss of capacity on the Open Labour Market, should she loose her employ which was given to her by a friend. Hence, a claim was made in relation to the non-economic loss and the loss of future work potential.

The matter was capable of being resolved for $50,000.00.

This was an excellent resolution for the claimant who has done everything to move on with her life.