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Public Liability & Personal Injury Claims – Adelaide

Public Liability and Personal Injury Law covers a wide range of situations where people, through no fault of their own, have sustained injuries or other forms of harm due to individuals, private businesses or public entities who are found neglectful in their ‘duty of care’. Accidents and injuries can occur on private property (including private homes and gardens, cinemas and shopping centres), or on public land (including public roads, footpaths, parks and government offices). Common injury scenarios include slip and fall incidents; motor vehicle accidents; medical negligence and workplace accidents.

No matter what type of injury or illness you or your loved ones have suffered as a result of negligence, there are steps you can take to ensure you are adequately compensated for any pain and suffering you endure. For example, you may find yourself unable to work or even complete normal daily tasks. These set-backs can have significant financial and emotional consequences including your ability to earn a living and pay for the all-important medical expenses. Getting a fair and equitable compensation pay-out can take the worry out of your situation and allow you to focus on your rehabilitation.

Personal injury compensation may cover things like:

  • Medical expenses;
  • Loss of earnings;
  • Physical and psychological suffering;
  • Home care costs if you are incapacitated including personal care, domestic cleaning and garden maintenance; and
  • Loss of quality of life.

In cases such as this it is essential to get an expert medical opinion on your injuries, and note how these injuries impact your current day-to-day life and how they might affect your future.

Public liability and personal injury matters can be complex and proving liability (fault) is not always straight-forward. Specific time-limits in which to bring an action also applies, therefore, it is important to obtain legal advice by speaking with a Scammell & Co. injury lawyer as soon as possible after the accident. We will discuss with you the circumstances of your incident, and assess the facts and evidence of your case to ascertain if your injuries meet the degree to which you are entitled to make a personal injury compensation claim.

Some of the more common injuries and corresponding psychological effects include:

  • Broken bones and fractures;
  • Brain and head injuries;
  • Spinal, neck and back injuries;
  • Amputation;
  • Hearing or eyesight loss;
  • Chronic pain;
  • Nervous shock; and
  • Depression, anxiety and phobias.

Scammell & Co. have helped many clients win their compensation claims. In fact, our injury law team are some of the best performing Public Liability and Personal Injury lawyers in Adelaide with a track-record of success in achieving compensation pay-outs for their clients.

Key questions to ask yourself if considering an injury claim:

  • What financial impacts will my injuries have on myself and my family?
  • Have my injuries prevented me from returning to work?
  • What constitutes fair and equitable compensation?
  • What long-term impacts and costs are there as a result of my injuries?

An experienced Scammell & Co. injury lawyer can provide answers to these important questions during your first initial consultation. Our injury lawyers will also provide an assessment of your case, including advice on the most appropriate legal options available to you, and guide you in making the right decisions so you get the best outcome.

No win – No fee arrangements

Scammell and Co. offers a ‘no-win, no-fee’ arrangement on compensation claims. This means that you will only pay for our legal services if you are successful in obtaining a compensation pay-out.

Below are some of the more common injury compensation claim scenarios:

Public Liability claims due to ‘slip and fall’ incidents

It is not widely known that if someone sustains an injury commonly known as a ‘slip and fall’ incident, they may be entitled to make a claim for public liability compensation. Such ‘slip and fall’ incidents can occur either in a public place or when visiting a private property – even someone’s home. Such settings include shopping centres, supermarkets, cinemas, carparks, office buildings or schools. The owners of such places have a ‘duty of care’ to provide a safe environment and take all necessary precautions to mitigate the risk of injury to patrons or users. It is important to note that the claim is not brought personally against a person at fault, but instead falls against the public liability insurer of the property.

Whilst it is impossible to eliminate all risks, if you are injured as a result of careless actions on the part of owners of public settings or property, for example: if the owner has neglected to provide adequate warning signs of potential dangers such as slippery or wet floors, or failed to provide alternative safe passage around a hazard such as a building defect or construction work, then you may have a claim for compensation.

Superannuation and insurance disability claims and death benefit claims

If you were working and you suffered an injury or illness (be it a partial and/or total permanent impairment or injury) that has prevented you from working for a period of 6 consecutive months or more, you are eligible to claim superannuation and insurance disability payments. The general definition of Total & Permanent Disability (TPD) which would entitle you to a superannuation lump sum benefit is:

“that you are partially and/or totally permanently disabled and unfit for your old job or any other suitable job that relates to your education, training and experience”.

Therefore, if you can no longer work and are unable to perform the duties of your usual occupation full-time, you can claim a lump-sum benefit in addition to any workers compensation or superannuation payment entitlements.

Alternatively, if you were dependent on a partner or parent who dies, you can make a death benefit claim against the deceased’s superannuation fund or private insurer.

Such pay-outs can ease you or your loved-one’s financial burden, however, individual policies do vary in terms of the level of coverage, the waiting periods and the length of time benefits are payed.

A Scammell & Co. personal injury lawyer will assess your case, manage the entire claim process on your behalf, including obtaining any necessary medical reports, to ensure you get the entitlements you deserve.

Remember, Scammell & Co. offers:

  • a FREE assessment of your case; and
  • no-win, no-fee arrangements so you’re not out of pocket.

Medical Negligence Claims

We place a great deal of trust in the medical profession to take exemplary care of us when we seek medical attention. Unfortunately, things can go wrong, and if they do it is considered a serious case of medical malpractice. This brings into question the medical practitioner’s quality of care and whether they should be allowed to continue treating patients in the future.

Medical negligence covers injuries that occur as a direct result of a doctor, nurse, physiotherapist, chiropractor, hospital, or other health professional failing to provide reasonable care and a standard of skill one expects in the treatment of a patient. Some examples of medical negligence include:

  • Failing to obtain consent from you to perform a medical procedure;
  • Misdiagnosing an illness or injury;
  • Failing to treat your medical condition appropriately;
  • Prescribing incorrect medication or dosage;
  • Failure to communicate what is involved in a procedure or what the risks are; and
  • Practitioners performing procedures that they are not qualified to do.

If you suspect you are the victim of medical negligence then you may have a legitimate claim for compensation. Such a claim may cover:

  • Pain and suffering;
  • Past, present and future loss of income;
  • Past, present and ongoing medical expenses;
  • Home care costs; and
  • General out-of-pocket expenses.

A Scammell & Co. injury lawyer will:

  • Assess your case;
  • Notify the other person(s) involved in the accident;
  • Handle negotiations with the health practitioner (or their insurance company);
  • Engage medical specialists to provide expert opinion on your circumstances;
  • Gather evidence including relevant medical reports; and
  • Attend the scene of the accident (if necessary).

Motor Vehicle Accident Claims

Unfortunately, motor vehicle accidents occur all too frequently and can involve cars, trucks, motorcycles, bicycles and any other road users. Motor vehicle accidents can happen to anyone regardless of their driving experience and skills, resulting in minor or serious injuries – even death for drivers, passengers and by-standers alike. If you have sustained injuries due to the negligent actions of another driver there are steps you can take to ensure you are adequately compensated for any suffering and hardship you endure.

For a comprehensive outline of motor vehicle accidents claims please follow the link.

FAQs

I have sustained an injury. Do I have a claim for compensation?

If you are injured as a result of a slip and fall, or some other similar accident that was not your fault, you may well have a claim. It is important that you find the person, company, or business responsible for your injury. We can conduct searches and investigate who was at fault for your injuries. You can then claim compensation from them.

How is it decided whether I get compensation for my injuries?

You will only have a claim if the injuries and losses resulted from the negligence of another person, or company. We can provide you with advice about what is required to prove negligence.

Once we have established ‘fault’ (known as liability), we will then advise you how to prove the extent of your injuries and loss.

This is commonly referred to as the quantum (amount) of your claim.

What are my entitlements for compensation?

The law divides the compensation you can receive into many different categories including:

  • The pain and suffering you have endured.
  • Any residual disability or scarring you may have from your injuries.
  • Time off work or loss of work opportunities.
  • The cost of medical treatment you have received and will need to continue to receive.
  • The market value of the help that your spouse, parents or children have given you due to you injuries.
  • The effect of your injuries on your ability to earn an income.

Some categories have the potential to attract large sums of compensation while for others, including pain and suffering, the law has effectively capped the amount of compensation that can be paid.

The law in this area is complicated and it is therefore very important that you engage a solicitor to maximise your claim.

How long will the claim process take?

Claims cannot be finalised until you have either fully recovered or recovered as well as you are going to in the opinion of your doctor. That is because an assessment of your future medical expenses and permanent incapacity (if any) forms part of your claim. If you have suffered a serious injury and need a long rehabilitation process, the time to settle your claim may take longer to resolve.

It is important to note that once your claim is settled, it is considered resolved once and for all. Therefore, it is important that your claim is not finalised until such time that we are fully informed of any potential problems you may encounter in the future.

Do you do “no win – no fee”?

Scammell & Co. offers a “no win no fee” arrangement for personal injury claims. This means that we do not charge you for our legal fees unless we are successful in obtaining compensation for your claim.

Are there time limits on lodging a claim for compensation?

In South Australia claimants generally have a three-year time-limit from the date of injury in which to lodge personal injury claims.

Other types of claims such as motor vehicle accident claims have different time-frames. Please refer to the Motor Vehicle Accidents page for details.

Free legal advice.

If you have some questions, want some advice or want to get the process underway, contact Scammell & Co. to arrange a meeting. In many cases (not all) the first 30 minutes of your first meeting is free. This can give time to outline your matter and for us to give you preliminary advice.
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