What is the ‘Nominal Defendant’ in Brisbane?
The Nominal Defendant is a government scheme established in Queensland to protect a victim of a motor vehicle accident in cases where the at-fault vehicle cannot be identified or if the vehicle is not registered with a Compulsory Third Party Insurer (CTP Insurer).
What are some of the most common reasons why I would claim against the Nominal Defendant?
The most common cases where the nominal defendant will come into play can include:
- A hit and run accident where the offending vehicle collides with another vehicle but continues driving and there is no information such as a license plate to identify that vehicle.
- Some situations where a driver carelessly swerves and causes other cars to collide but is not directly involved in the collision and continues on its way.
- An at-fault vehicle is not registered with a CTP Insurer because the owner forgot to register.
What happens when I make a claim against the Nominal Defendant?
Once a claim is made against the Nominal Defendant, an investigation will be made on the accident to try to locate the at-fault vehicle and driver. The most common way that this is done is through CCTV footage around the accident scene (if available) or by interviewing local residents, workers and other people who may have witnessed the accidents. In some cases, public advertising will be used to locate the vehicle or the driver who caused the accident.
If the person responsible for an accident is found then the claim’s liability will shift to that person and his CTP Insurer.
If the vehicle or the driver cannot be identified, then the Nominal Defendant will continue to meet any compensation that is entitled to the victim(s) of the accident.
Are the limitation periods the same for the Nominal Defendant?
No. The time limits are much stricter because the Nominal Defendant needs to commence its investigation as soon as possible to identify the at-fault vehicle after an accident. There are many circumstances that may be time sensitive such as the availability of evidence.
You have 3 months to give the Nominal Defendant notice of your claim.
You must also have a Notice of Accident Claim form lodged with the Nominal Defendant within 9 months of the accident. It is important to note that this form must also be compliant with the provisions of the Motor Accident Insurance Act 1994.
Is my claim under the Nominal Defendant?
The best way to determine this is to speak to an accredited specialist in personal injury. Do not try to take general information and apply it to the personal circumstances of your claim. The law is very complicated and failing to apply it properly can adversely affect your legal rights to compensation.
Contact East Coast Injury Lawyers today to get accurate legal advice with a free, no obligation consultation. Simply fill out our case review form or contact us at 1300 720 544.