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Personal Injury

We’re with you on the road to recovery, whatever that may look like.

Confidence for tomorrow

At Lindbloms Lawyers we understand that no matter what your age or background, suffering an unexpected injury or illness is not only painful but distressing, often resulting in financial hardship due to the cost of medical treatment and absences from work.

Making a claim against whoever is responsible may seem a daunting or costly process. Our team of dedicated personal injury lawyers are here to help guide you through the process, to provide you with an honest and realistic evaluation of your claim and to strive to achieve the best possible result for you.

There are many different types of personal injury claims and complex legal principles apply to each case depending on what type of claim it is. To ensure you are fairly compensated, it is important that you are represented by an experienced personal injury lawyer.

With Lindbloms Lawyers you can be confident that your claim will be handled by experts with many years of experience, giving your matter the care and attention you deserve.

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Areas of Speciality

  • Catastrophic injuries
  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • Medical negligence
  • Birth injury claims
  • Work injuries
  • Asbestosis
  • Occupiers / public liability
  • Product liability
  • Victims of crime
  • Institutional / sexual abuse claims
  • Sporting injuries
  • School injuries
  • Fatalities
  • Infant claims
  • Income protection and superannuation insurance

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Our Personal Injury team

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Frequently asked Personal Injury questions

  • Does my claim have a time limit?

    The time limits applicable to personal injury claims vary depending upon what type of claim you are pursuing.

    Court Proceedings

    If your claim involves Court proceedings then generally you must issue your Court proceedings within 3 years of your injury having occurred. The time frame for starting Court proceedings is referred to as “the limitation period.” Sometimes injuries occur gradually over a period of time such as a repetitive strain injury, a psychological injury or a disease. In those circumstances, determining the precise expiry date of the limitation period is not straightforward and a cautious approach should be taken.
    When a claimant is injured before they reach the age of 18 years of age, they will generally have until they reach 21 years of age to start Court proceedings.

    One notable exception is in cases involving a defective product where the time frame is usually much shorter, depending upon the particular circumstances involved.
    In certain circumstances it is possible to obtain an extension of time of the limitation period. Every case is different but as a general rule, the more time that has passed since the limitation period expired, the more difficult it is to obtain an extension.

    Time Limits for Notice of Claims

    The above time limits apply to the commencement of Court proceedings.
    With many types of claims however there are additional time limits requiring early notification of the claim. Although late notification does not automatically preclude you from pursuing a claim, a reasonable explanation is generally required for the delay and/or the relevant insurer is entitled to reject the claim if they have been prejudiced by the late notification.

    Delaying your claim may mean that your limitation period expires, making it difficult, or even impossible, for you to still claim. It is also easier to investigate the circumstances surrounding a claim months, rather than years, after an injury or illness has occurred. If you are not sure if your time limit has expired or if you have a claim, or whether you even want to pursue it, take advantage of our first free consultation and make an appointment to talk to one of our specialist personal injury lawyers. We will help you make an informed decision and decide what to do.

  • What can I claim? (Common Law Damages)

    Over the last 30 years the various State governments around Australia and the Federal government have made frequent and extensive changes to the legislation applicable to the assessment of compensation in personal injury claims.

    The effect of these amendments has been to reduce the entitlements of injured people and replace what was a relatively simple, straightforward system with complex thresholds and formulas which have the potential to seriously disadvantage unrepresented claimants. The compensation payable in a personal injury claim depends upon the nature and severity of the injury or medical condition involved, how it effects your life and earning capacity and the type of claim involved.

    Of course, no sum of money will ever properly compensate for loss of your health and the effect an unexpected injury or medical condition can have on your quality of life, however damages in a common law claim (also known as a civil claim, damages claim or negligence claim) are assessed with the intention of trying to restore you to the position you would have been in if the negligence had not occurred.

    Some examples of common law claims are: motor vehicle accident claims, medical negligence claims and occupier’s liability claims.

    Workers compensation claims, income protection insurance, superannuation claims and victims of crime claims are not common law claims and different considerations apply.

    As an injury or medical condition effects many areas of a claimant’s life, the law has developed various categories of compensation, known as heads of damage.

    Most of these categories are divided in to past and future losses with the past being losses sustained between the date of injury and the date of resolution of the claim, and the future being any losses likely to be sustained over the remainder of life.

  • What Are The Types of Compensation?

    Non-Economic Loss (Pain and Suffering)

    Assessment of this figure takes in to account both past and future pain and suffering and includes consideration of the following factors:

    • The severity of the initial injury
    • Whether hospitalisation or surgery was necessary
    • The extent of pain and discomfort in the days or months following the injury
    • Emotional distress and psychological injury
    • The extent of any residual ongoing disabilities and restrictions
    • Impact on quality and enjoyment of life
    • Impact on social and recreational activities and interaction with family and friends
    • Whether career or work capacity is effected.

    Past Economic & Superannuation Loss

    If, as a result of your injuries or medical condition, you have been unable to work or have had to reduce your working hours, you will be entitled to recover your net loss of earnings. If you were not working as at the date of the accident, that does not necessarily mean that you are not entitled to damages for Past Economic Loss.

    At Lindbloms Lawyers we have acted for many clients who have been injured whilst in between jobs, or doing full-time study and not working, or who have been pregnant or a stay-at-home mum or dad, but whose injuries prevented or delayed them from returning to the workforce. In such circumstances the right evidence as to the claimant’s work history, background and intentions should result in payment of compensation for Past Economic Loss.

    Sometimes an injury or illness will result in the claimant missing out on a promotion. In those circumstances the loss of the extra income they would have earned is also compensable. Usually damages for Past Economic Loss are accompanied by payment of the compulsory superannuation benefits which the claimant would have received along with those earnings.

    Future Economic & Superannuation Loss

    If you can no longer perform all of the duties required for your occupation, or you have had to change jobs, or cannot work at all, then damages are payable for loss of earning capacity. Just because you have managed to return to work and maintain your employment, earning the same income, does not necessarily disentitle you to this category of compensation.

    In today’s competitive labour market, consideration needs to be given to whether you would be disadvantaged in applying for employment if you were to lose your current job and/or whether your injuries would limit your employment options.

    At Lindbloms Lawyers we understand that the consequences of being unable to work, or perform your job as well as you used to, can have devastating financial consequences, and worrying about the future can keep you awake at night. Our experienced personal injury lawyers will work with you to ensure that your economic loss claim is properly investigated and substantiated so as to achieve the best result possible.

    Past and Future Medical Expenses

    All personal injury claims involve recovery of the cost of past medical and related treatment. This includes the cost of doctors, hospitals, physiotherapy and chiropractic treatment. Sometimes an insurer will dispute the reasonableness of allied health services like long term physiotherapy, acupuncture and/or remedial massage. In those circumstances we assist our clients to obtain the medical evidence required to justify the need for ongoing treatment.

    In addition to treatment costs, the costs of medication, travel to and from treatment and other items like bandages, braces, crutches, therapy equipment and the like are also recoverable. If you are seriously injured, the costs incurred by family visiting you in hospital are also generally recoverable, such as travel and parking costs and sometimes even the airfares and accommodation costs of relatives if they do not live nearby.

    Once your claim is finalised, you are responsible for all ongoing medical expenses. These can be significant if required over a number of years or a lifetime. We will ensure that medical evidence as to your likely future medical needs, including the cost of any surgery you might need in future, is obtained and included in the assessment of your damages.

    Past and Future Assistance with Personal Care, Household & Domestic Chores

    The law recognises that persons who are injured often have to rely on relatives or friends to assist with personal care, household and domestic chores and sometimes, maintaining the family business. This can involve help with things like: dressing and undressing, showering, continence issues, mobility, dressing wounds, therapy as well as household cleaning, cooking, laundry, grocery shopping and/or gardening, cleaning the gutters and walking the dogs. Any task at all that you now need help to do is relevant.

    Although the person providing such assistance has no entitlement to compensation for doing so, even if they have incurred expense or taken leave from work, the injured person is entitled to be compensated for having to rely on such assistance. If a cost has been incurred, such as for nursing, household cleaning or gardening services then the cost of such services are recoverable from the defendant.

    In the vast majority of claims, past assistance has been provided gratuitously ie at no cost to the injured person. If no cost has been incurred then the amount payable is nevertheless calculated by reference to commercial rates. For example, if prior to the injury, you used to take care of all of the cooking and cleaning for the household but because of your injuries, you are no longer able to do so, we would estimate the average hours per week spent by whoever is doing the cooking and cleaning now and claim the commercial rate of providing same, from the date of the accident and ongoing.

    As commercial rates are generally between $35.00 to $50.00 per hour, depending upon how long ago the accident was and what type of claim it is, the amount payable for Past and/or Future Assistance can be substantial. Although damages are assessed using commercial rates, once your claim is finalised it is entirely up to you whether you engage a commercial provider or continue to rely on friends and family members.

    At Lindbloms Lawyers we ensure that your entitlement to this category of compensation is properly valued by taking detailed instructions from you, obtaining medical opinion as to your need for assistance and where appropriate, engaging an Occupational Therapist to do a formal assessment.

    Equipment and Home Modifications

    As discussed in the above section, we often engage an Occupational Therapist to assist us with assessing, and proving, the difficulties our clients experience on a day to day basis with personal care, household and domestic chores. Occupational Therapists are also able to provide recommendations regarding the purchase of aids and appliances to assist around the home and as to home modifications.

    Interest

    Interest is generally recoverable on damages for Past Economic and Superannuation Loss, Past Care and Assistance and Past Medical Expenses.

    Loss of Consortium

    Injuries effect not only the person who has been injured but also the people that live with them. It is common for injured persons to become frustrated, anxious or depressed about their injuries, the pain and not being able to do the things they used to. Often couples are less able to enjoy the social and recreational activities they used to engage in prior to the injury. Physical intimacy may be painful. The uninjured partner usually has to take on increased responsibility for household and domestic chores. All of these matters can put a strain on the relationship and are relevant to assessing damages for Loss of Consortium.

    This category of compensation is added to the claim of the injured person but brought in the name of the spouse or domestic partner, (in the latter case the couple must have been cohabiting continuously for at least 3 years as at the date of injury, or alternatively, for a total of 3 years within the 4 years prior to the injury or have a child together)

  • Is Legal Advice Important?

    If you have been injured and believe you may have a claim, it is important that you obtain proper legal advice as to the relevant time limits.

    Notifying an insurer or potential defendant of your claim involves providing information about how you were injured and about your injuries. Involving a solicitor at an early stage in the process will ensure that the information is presented accurately and appropriately. Delaying your claim may mean that your limitation period expires, making it difficult, or even impossible, for you to still claim.It is also easier to investigate the circumstances surrounding a claim months, rather than years, after an injury or illness has occurred.

    If you are not sure if your time limit has expired or if you have a claim, or whether you even want to pursue it, take advantage of our first free consultation and make an appointment to talk to one of our specialist personal injury lawyers. We will help you make an informed decision and decide what to do.

  • Restoring your Quality of Life

    When you have suffered an injury or illness caused by the negligence of a medical practitioner, a hospital, or another provider of health related services such as a rehabilitation centre you may be entitled to compensation for medical negligence. You are entitled to expect that a medical practitioner (Doctor) or a hospital or other health provider (such as a physiotherapist, chiropractor or dentist) will act in accordance with standards of reasonable care when they advise you about your medical condition and when they treat your medical condition. When the standard of care you (or a dependent) received was not in accordance with reasonable practice, causing injury or illness or even death, then you may be entitled to compensation.

    In medical negligence claims your medical records are of critical importance. They must be closely analysed to understand what happened and to identify areas of potential negligence. Interpreting medical records requires an understanding of medical abbreviations and terminology.

    Through many years of experience in handling medical negligence claims our medical negligence solicitors can quickly analyse and understand your records and give you reliable and detailed advice about your rights.

  • What Compensation Can I Get?

    Compensation (also known as damages) is paid for physical and psychological injuries resulting from the negligence of health professionals. Compensation is intended to put you in the position you would have been in had the negligence not occurred. To put it another way, compensation is to compensate you for losses you have suffered as a result of the medical provider’s negligence.

    Medical negligence claims include injuries sustained by your child at birth due to negligent management of your pregnancy or the labour, mistakes made during surgery, failing to properly advise you about the risks associated with surgery or about alternative treatment options, failing to properly diagnose your injury or illness resulting in a poorer prognosis or outcome, delays in diagnosing post-operative infections or complications and errors with medication.

    It is important to discuss the claim with Lindbloms at the earliest opportunity as time limits may apply when making a claim.

    Lindbloms will address the three crucial aspects of a claim:

    1. Was the health care provider negligent? Keep in mind that not every complication or poor outcome is caused by negligence.
    2. Did the negligence lead to the injury?
    3. Did the treatment cause or contribute to the injuries?

    Pain and Suffering

    This legal terminology describes compensation for the non financial consequences of your injury or illness. Examples are pain, discomfort, anxiety, impairment of your enjoyment and quality of life, loss of or reduced enjoyment of social and recreational activities and, in more serious cases, loss of career.

    Economic Loss

    When your earning capacity is affected by your injury or illness you may be entitled to damages to compensate you for your loss of earnings. If you can no longer perform all of the duties required for your occupation or you have had to change jobs or cannot work at all then compensation may be available for loss of earning capacity. When it comes to assessing this category of compensation it will be necessary to investigate the extent to which your injuries will affect your capacity for work over the rest of your working life. These are complex and sometimes difficult calculations. Lindbloms Lawyers has extensive experience assessing claims for economic loss and you will benefit from our expertise and desire to fight for your proper compensation.

    Superannuation Losses

    Where an entitlement for economic loss can be established, damages for loss of superannuation payments over the anticipated pre-injury life of your employment are also generally payable.

    Medical Expenses

    As a result of your injury or illness you may require further medical treatment and therapy. There can also be the cost of medicines, equipment and aids, home modification and vehicle modifications. These costs (both past and future) also form part of your claim.

    Voluntary Services

    Following an injury, people often need assistance from family to perform household and domestic tasks such as household cleaning, grocery shopping, household maintenance and gardening. Where there are serious injuries, assistance with dressing and undressing, showering, toileting and mobility may be necessary. Compensation may be sought to cover these needs. The compensation is calculated by reference to the cost that would be incurred if someone were paid to provide those personal services.

    Paid Services

    Caring for a seriously injured relative can be time consuming and exhausting. If you have paid a carer, cleaner or handyman to help with personal care, household and/or domestic chores because of the injury, then those costs are generally recoverable.

    An allowance is also claimed at commercial rates for the costs of ongoing services, for however long such services will be needed. Sometimes this is for the remainder of life. Damages for this category of compensation are often substantial.

    Compensation in case of death / Loss of Financial Support

    Where the negligence results in death, family members of the deceased may be entitled to compensation for psychological injury suffered as a result. When a person was financially dependent on the deceased, such as their spouse or child, he or she may be entitled to damages for loss of financial support. Damages for loss of household assistance and other services may also be payable.

  • How do I prove negligence?

    New clients often ask how we can prove that the medical advice or treatment they are concerned about was negligent.

    One of the critical requirements of a successful medical negligence claim is having the right expert.

    Ultimately, it is up to the Court to decide whether or not the health professional or hospital involved was negligent. However, to assist the Court to determine whether there was negligence or not, they will hear evidence from experts ie people who are trained and experienced in the field of medicine which the case concerns. Those experts will inform the Court whether they consider the health professional involved in your case acted in accordance with a reasonable standard of care or not.

    Consequently, selection of the appropriate expert to comment in your case is one of the most important steps in your claim. At Lindbloms Lawyers, our experienced medical negligence lawyers will be able to recommend independent, well respected experts who are not afraid to be critical of poor medical treatment and advice, allowing you to make a decision about whether to pursue the matter with confidence.

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