Are you unsure about what support you may be able to get from the TAC as a bike rider? We spoke with Alice Lau, Road Accident Lawyer at Maurice Blackburn Lawyers, to get some information for riders.
When are riders covered by TAC and what recent changes may affect riders?
Many riders have an entitlement to support and compensation from the Transport Accident Commission (TAC), the statutory insurer for road accidents in Victoria, however in my experience there is often uncertainty about when a rider can access TAC support, and most people are not aware of what the TAC can provide for them.
There have also been some recent changes to the TAC which may affect riders.
A rider can lodge a claim with the TAC if they were injured in an accident caused by the driving of a car, motorcycle, bus, train or tram in Victoria.
A rider can also lodge a claim which occurs interstate if they were a Victorian resident at the time and the accident involved a Victorian registered vehicle. However that does not cover every scenario where a TAC claim should be lodged.
Did you know?
- You can claim for your injuries even if a car doesn’t touch you or your bike but makes you crash by coming too close or cutting you off.
- You can claim for injuries sustained by an open or opening door of a vehicle.
- You can claim even if the driver of the car did not stop and exchange their details.
- You can claim for medical support and income support for injuries even if the accident is your fault.
- You can claim if you collide with a car while travelling to or from your workplace, even if the car was stationary.
- You do not have to provide a statement to a TAC investigator.
If your TAC claim is accepted, the TAC is required to pay for all reasonable medical treatment and rehabilitation costs, income support (you do not necessarily have to be employed at the time of the accident), and you may be entitled to lump sum compensation.
A recent and welcome change to the law was the removal of the Medical Excess for accidents that occur after 14 February 2018.
This means that the rider no longer has to pay the upfront costs of medical treatment of $651, and the TAC will fund all treatment right from the start.
This goes some way to assisting riders who are injured from the road to access the treatment and rehabilitation they need immediately, and get the back on the bike.
Bicycle Network members receive free consultation with Maurice Blackburn Lawyers if they are involved in an incident and need legal support.
Alice Lau is a Road Accident Lawyer at Maurice Blackburn Lawyers and is an LIV Accredited Specialist.
She acts for riders injured on the road, and will be writing a regular column for Bicycle Network and its member newsletter In the Loop to inform riders about legal issues which affect them.