NSW green slip changes must put injured first – ALA
10th May 2013
NSW Compulsory Third Party insurance changes, introduced into parliament this week, and said by the government to be ‘fairer and more affordable’, are actually harming the very people they are designed to protect, reducing benefits and payment periods, the Australian Lawyers Alliance said today.
“At a time when the nation is prioritising the rights of those with disabilities under the NDIS ahead of cost, why are those injured, through no fault of their own, having their benefits stripped?” ALA NSW Committee spokesman, Clifton Baker, queried.
“The CTP changes, mean that 90 percent of innocent accident victims will receive reduced payments over a shorter period and have rights, in existence in NSW since 1942, removed,” Mr Baker said.
He said children were at a particular disadvantage as their future loss of earnings would remain entirely uncompensated.
“If 90% of victims cannot recover their lost earnings, road users will need income protection insurance, which will more than offset any CTP premium savings. And those unable to afford such cover face financial ruin every time they go near a road,” Mr Baker said.
“Superannuation policies only provide limited income protection through total and permanent disability payments (which can be difficult to access) and formal income protection cover (an expensive, optional extra most working people cannot afford).
"By also removing victims’ lawyers from the Scheme, powerful insurers and their in-house lawyers, will be given an unfair advantage forcing the injured to fight alone,” he said.
Mr Baker said no-fault schemes in other states had already racked up major deficits with Victoria’s Transport Accident Commission scheme in the red by $1.4 billion.