Car accident on private property – will TAC cover it?

Car accidents on private property graphic

You may have an entitlement to claim TAC benefits if you’re involved in a motor vehicle accident on private property.

There are a new considerations however which this page will explore.

What is considered private land/property?

Private property is defined under the law simply as land that the public may not enter or may not remain at without permission and land which is not considered a highway.

A highway is defined as any road or a road related area.

In what instances will I be covered by the TAC?

  • If the accident involved a registered and/or insured motor vehicle, you should be covered by the TAC for any injuries.
  • If the accident involved an unregistered motor vehicle then the TAC is likely not liable to pay any compensation to you if you suffer injury.
  • If you were involved in an accident on private land as a driver of the vehicle, passenger, a pedestrian or a cyclist and the vehicle was not insured, the TAC will pay you benefits if you are not the owner of the vehicle.
  • The owner of the uninsured motor vehicle who is injured in a motor vehicle accident on private land is not covered by the TAC.

What else should I know?

If you have a vehicle that is predominantly used on private land and you wish to ensure that you are covered, you can purchase TAC coverage for non road registered vehicles.

This covers vehicles such as dirt bikes, tractors and other vehicles that are used on private land.

What TAC benefits am I entitled to if I’ve been involved in an accident on private land?

If you satisfy one of the criteria above and you wish to claim TAC compensation, then generally speaking you’ll be entitled to the same benefits that anyone else would be able to obtain.

That is, without having to prove that someone else was at fault, you are entitled to obtain payment of medical and like expenses, income replacement benefits as well as a lump sum called an impairment benefit if you suffer a permanent impairment as a consequence of the accident.

If the accident was caused by someone else’s negligence, then you can potentially pursue a common-law claim for damages.

This is a lump sum claim where in addition to negligence you also need to show that you suffered a serious injury in the accident.

What should I do if I’ve been involved in an accident on private land?

You should firstly ensure to get the medical treatment that you need.

Even if you’re not sure whether you’re entitled to TAC benefits, you should contact the TAC and discuss the matter with them over the phone.

If they say that you are entitled to lodge a claim, then you can do so on the phone.

Alternatively, you can lodge a claim online.

You’ll be provided with a TAC claim number which you can provide to those that are providing you with medical treatment so they can bill the TAC for your treatment expenses.

Even though the incident occurred on private property, in many cases you should still contact the police and report the accident to them. Particularly if someone else was at fault for the accident a police report may be very important if you wish to pursue a common law claim down the track.

If you’re not the owner of the property, you should make sure to contact the owner and alert them of the accident as soon as possible.

Conclusion

If you’ve been involved in an accident on private land, you may be entitled to claim TAC benefits if you suffered injury.

If you satisfy the criteria to claim TAC benefits, your entitlements will in general be the same as someone that was injured on a public road.

If you are involved in an accident on private land and you suffered an injury, you should contact the TAC as soon as possible and talk to them about lodging a claim.

If you are told by them that you are not entitled to claim, it would be advisable to seek advice from a lawyer.