Injured in a car accident with no health insurance (Vic)
Some people worry that they don’t have health insurance when they’re involved in a car accident in Victoria.
Which we understand.
Medical treatment can be expensive.
In some instances, surgery can be required, which not only can be expensive, can necessitate a long wait time in some instances if you have to go on a public waiting list.
It’s important that people are aware however that if they have suffered injury in an accident on the road in most cases they should not be using their own health insurance to cover the cost of medical expenses.
This is because they likely already have insurance which they have been paying for in the form of TAC insurance.
Every year that a person has been paying for their vehicle registration, a portion of the overall registration fee amount is for TAC insurance.
It actually makes up a significant part of the overall amount that you pay.
Once upon a time in Victoria, people were required to take out their own insurance policies to cover themselves in the event that they suffered injury on the road.
However, Victoria now has a compulsory insurance scheme called the TAC.
And so for this reason, if you have been injured in a motor vehicle accident, whether you were at fault for the accident or not at fault, whether you were driving the vehicle or were a passenger, whether you were struck by a vehicle as a motorcycle rider, cyclist or pedestrian, you are likely covered by the TAC in the event of injury.
You should read this page if you have questions over whether you may be entitled to claim at TAC benefits.
Medical expenses covered by the TAC
The TAC, just like a health insurer, will cover the cost of many medical expenses that you may require to treat injuries suffered in the accident.
What the TAC will look at is whether an expense is reasonable.
If you have been involved in a road accident and you required an ambulance, the cost of the ambulance will likely be covered by the TAC.
And you may find that if you were hospitalised after the accident, the hospital has already lodged a TAC claim on your behalf.
Many hospitals do this for people that have been involved in an accident on the road because they want to ensure that all relevant medical expenses related to hospital treatment get paid for.
If you want to read about how the payment of medical expenses works under TAC clean, we suggest that you read this page.
This is where a TAC claim Differ from your regular private health insurance.
Where the private health insurance is limited in terms of what they can cover, TAC has a broader scope of entitlements.
You can also be compensated if your ability to work has been impacted by way of income payments.
There are two potential lump sum claim that you can pursue. The first is called an impairment benefit and the second is called a common law claim for damages.
Will claiming TAC impact my yearly vehicle registration cost?
The fact that you have pursued a TAC claim will not in any way impact your ongoing vehicle registration fee.
That fee will not change because you have pursued a claim.
Are there any other options rather than pursuing TAC claim?
In almost all cases where someone has suffered an injury on the road, we recommend that they lodge a TAC claim because there are really no alternative options that can give you comparative assistance.
And people need to keep in mind that his insurance they have paid for, potentially for many years which could amount to several thousands of dollars.
But if you really do not want to pursue a TAC claim, then you are able to still obtain medical treatment for free by going and seeing a GP that bulk bills.
If they require physio, chiro, osteo or another form of similar treatment however then they will struggle to get these bills paid for.
If they require psychological treatment then it is possible that they could get a number of free treatments if they obtain a referral from their general practitioner.
If they need to see a specialist they may get some money back from Medicare but there will still be a cost in most instances to see a specialist doctor.
If they require surgery, then they can go on the public waiting list but the wait times for certain surgeries can be significant when compared to being on a private waiting list (which if you had health insurance or an excepted TAC claim, you would be). Although if the surgery is urgent you should not have to wait too long even under the public system.
If you’ve been involved in a road accident and you don’t have private health insurance, You should lodge a TAC claim to get your medical expenses paid for.
Even if you do have private health insurance in almost all cases we recommend the lodgement of a TAC claim because it is insurance that you are paid for, possibly for a number of years.
Also, a TAC claim can provide you with a broader range of assistance than just the payment of medical expenses.