TAC maximum for pain and suffering
One thing that you can be compensated for under a TAC claim after an accident is pain and suffering.
There are four entitlements (generally speaking) under a TAC claim.
These are the payment of medical and like expenses, weekly payments, and impairment benefit lump sum and common-law claim for damages.
The impairment benefit claim and the common-law claim for damages can compensate you for pain and suffering.
Impairment claims and pain and suffering
You can read about impairment claims here.
Although an impairment claim is considered to be compensation for pain and suffering, it is a little bit odd in that two people could have the same injury, with one of those people being much more effective than the other person, but under an impairment claim they are entitled to the same compensation amount.
So to illustrate this, say that you have someone in their 20s that injured their shoulder who is a promising sportsman. The other person is a retired person.
The impact on the 20 year old sportsman likely to be much more significant than the retired person however under an impairment claim it’s likely they would obtain the same amount of compensation for pain and suffering.
The maximum amount of pain and suffering payable under an impairment claim as of 1 July 2021 is $371,610.
This amount is indexed annually.
The reality is that very few people will reach this figure which represents 100% impairment, or even get close to this.
At the other end of the impairment scale is the minimum amount that a person is entitled to if they reach the minimum threshold level of impairment of 11%, is $8140.
Common law claims and pain and suffering
This is the second lump sum claim open to people to pursue under the TAC scheme.
People can be compensated for both pain and suffering and loss of earnings via a common law claim.
Whereas in relation to an impairment benefit, two people with the same injury will be entitled to, in most cases, the same compensation amount.
With the determination of pain and suffering under a common law claim this is usually not the case.
The impact of a injury on a persons life, whether that be in relation to their ability to play sport, work, tend to their garden or perform household chores, is highly relevant.
Generally speaking, the more that an injury impacts of persons life, the more that their claim is likely worth in terms of pain and suffering compensation.
The maximum amount of pain and suffering damages that can be paid under a common law claim as of 1 July 2021 is $577,280.
This amount is indexed annually.
The pain and suffering compensation is separate from any loss of earnings compensation.
A person may be compensated for pain and suffering but there is no loss of earnings component as they have not lost any earnings to claim.
Whereas in other instances a person will be compensated for pain and suffering and loss of earnings.
It is not the case that a person will be compensated for loss of earnings alone without a pain and suffering component to the compensation. At least it’s not something we’ve ever come across.
It’s also important to keep in mind that the maximum amount of compensation payable by way of pain and suffering is that figure mentioned above, being $577,280.
So if you for example obtained compensation by way of an impairment benefit for pain and suffering in the amount of $100,000, then the maximum amount of pain and suffering damages that could be paid to you under common-law claim would be $477,280.
Any impairment benefit paid needs to be taken into account when it comes to determining pain and suffering damages payable under a common law claim.
There are two ways that a person can be compensated for pain and suffering under a TAC claim in Victoria.
The first is via an impairment claim and the second is via a common law claim for damages.
The maximum amount of pain and suffering payable under an impairment claim is currently, as at 1 July 2021, $371,610.
The maximum amount of pain and suffering payable under a common law lump sum claim is currently, as at 1 July 2021, $577,280.