Accidents on or after 16 December 2004
The following policy applies from 1 March 2005. This affects accidents on or after 16 December 2004.
When is a client assessed for impairment benefits?
- An impairment determination cannot be made:
- until 3 months elapse from the date of the accident; and
- the injuries are stable
- If the TAC believes a client is likely to be entitled to an impairment benefit, the assessment may be done 3 months after the accident and within 3 years of the accident, depending on the date the injuries stabilise. Also refer to Guideline question, " When are injuries considered to be stable, not stable or substantially stable ?"
- If a client is a " minor" at the date of the accident, the TAC will determine the client's degree of impairment:
- if the injuries are stable, when the client turns 18, or
- if the injuries are not stable, after the age of 18, but no later than a client turning 21
What if the client's injuries are not stable 3 years after the accident?
If after 3 years, the injuries are not-stable a client who is not a minor at the date of the accident may ask the TAC:
- to wait until the injuries stabilise before an assessment is done; or
- to be assessed, agreeing to accept the current (not-stable) impairment assessment as their final impairment determination.
Where a client has chosen to have their current impairment determined, the TAC has 12 months from the date of the written request in which to make a determination. Where a client has not advised the TAC of their choice within 90 days (of the 3 year mark), the TAC will determine the client's impairment within 12 months, (of the 90 day mark).
What if a client applies for an impairment determination in writing, more than 2 years after the accident?
Where a client applies to the TAC for a determination of impairment more than 2 years after the accident or after the injury first manifests itself, and the injury is stable at that time, the TAC must determine the client's degree of impairment within 12 months of a client's application. If the injury was not stable when the client applied, the TAC must determine the client's degree of impairment within 12 months after the injury stabilises or 2 years after the application, whichever first occurs.
How is the lump-sum benefit calculated?
Once a client's impairment has been determined at 11% or more they are entitled to receive a lump-sum benefit which is calculated in accordance with the applicable formula under section 47 of the TAA (1986) and the TAC's Impairment Benefit Table.
TAC's Impairment Benefit Table
Benefits effective on or after 1 July 2020
|Degree of impairment||Impairment benefit|
|10% or less||$0|
|11%-19%||$6,550 +((D-10) x $1,490)|
|20%-49%||$21,840 +((D-20) x $2,170)|
|50%-59%||$87,730 +((D-50) x $2,540)|
|60%-79%||$113,540 +((D-60) x $2,920)|
|80%-89%||$174,710 +((D-80) x $5,800)|
|90%-99%||$238,780 +((D-90) x $11,650)|
Where "D" is the degree of impairment expressed as a percentage number
A client's permanent impairment is determined at 21%, this is expressed as D = 21. The client is entitled to receive a lump-sum benefit calculated in accordance with the applicable formula found in the TAC's Impairment Benefit Table. As the impairment of 21% falls in the range of 20%-49%, the applicable formula is $21,840 +((D-20) x $2,170). Therefore the client' s lump-sum entitlement would be assessed as follows:
$21,840 +((21-20) x $2,170) = $24,010 lump-sum payable
Is a client entitled to annuity benefits?
No, weekly annuity benefits are not payable where the accident occurs on or after 16 December 2004.
What is an interim payment?
This is an advance payment in relation to a client's injuries, which may result in a permanent impairment of 11% or more. The degree of impairment used to calculate the interim payment does not determine a client's entitlement to loss of earnings capacity benefits or access to common law damages as it is not an impairment determination.
When is an interim lump-sum payable?
The following policy applies from 16 December 2004.
- An interim payment is not payable, if a client has been or may be charged with a relevant offence in relation to the accident. Refer to the Guidelines, " Drivers who are convicted and Drivers with charges pending ".
- An interim payment may be paid at any time after the accident and usually this may occur at 3 months after the accident, if the TAC is satisfied that:
- the client's permanent impairment is likely to be at least 30%; or
- the injuries are stable or substantially stable and the permanent impairment is likely to be 11% or more.
In either circumstance, the payment to be made is based on a degree of impairment of at least 11%.
- The interim impairment will be deducted from the final impairment when it is determined.
- Where an overpayment occurs because the final impairment is below the interim impairment, the TAC will not recover any overpayment from a client.
What payment options are available?
Under the Act, a client may elect to receive the impairment benefit as:
- one lump-sum; or
- a combination of a lump-sum and the remainder as weekly payments. These options are not available for interim lump-sums.