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Surviving Dependent Child

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Policy

The TAC may pay three types of benefits to a "child" of a person who has died as a result of a transport accident, these benefits are:

  • a lump-sum benefit
  • weekly benefits
  • an education allowance.

Transport Accident Act 1986 reference: s.59

Definitions

"Child" in relation to a person who has died, means:

  • a biological child of the person; or
  • an adopted child of the person (includes the deceased's adopted child or their partner's adopted child but excludes a child adopted by another person); or
  • a step- child of the person; or
  • a child of the person conceived prior to the death and who is born after the transport accident

but does not include a child who has a spouse or a domestic partner.

Transport Accident Act 1986 reference: s.3 'child'

Guidelines

Eligibility

Who is eligible for a lump-sum benefit, weekly benefits and the education allowance?

The TAC may pay a lump-sum benefit, weekly benefits and an education allowance to an eligible "dependent child" :

  • where there is no surviving dependent partner benefits payable, or
  • where the surviving partner was not the person responsible for taking care of the child, or
  • where the surviving partner dies (because of the same transport accident or for other reasons).

Lump-sum

Who is eligible for the lump-sum benefit?

A "child" who is a "dependent child" is eligible for the lump-sum benefit if he/she:

  • is under 16 years of age, or
  • has attained the age of 16 years but is under the age of 25 years and is a full-time student or an apprentice*, and
  • is wholly, mainly or in part dependent on the deceased person for economic support at the date of the death.

but does not include a child who has a spouse or a domestic partner.

Transport Accident Act 1986 reference: s.3 'dependent child'

Who receives the lump-sum benefit?

Where a child is under 18 years of age, the lump-sum benefit will be paid to State Trustees.

Where a child dies before reaching 18 years of age, State Trustees will refund the lump-sum benefit to the TAC.

If an impairment benefit is paid to a parent prior to their death from transport accident injuries, how does this affect the children's entitlement to death lump sum?

The children's death lump sum is not affected by the payment of an impairment benefit to the parent prior to their death from the transport accident injuries. The impairment benefit will not be subtracted from the death lump sum. The children are entitled to the full death lump sum which is shared equally amongst the dependent children.

Transport Accident Act 1986 reference: s.59

How is the lump-sum benefit divided?

  1. The lump-sum benefit is a fixed statutory amount . The TAC will divide the whole amount equally among all of the dependent children of the deceased parent.
  2. Where a dependent surviving partner (or partners) is also eligible for the lump-sum benefit and the dependent children are not dependent on the surviving partners, the TAC will divide the lump-sum benefit as follows:
  • one half of the benefit is paid to the dependent surviving partner, or amongst the surviving partners; and
  • one half of the benefit will be divided equally amongst all of the dependent children.



Weekly Benefits

Who is eligible to receive the weekly benefit?

The TAC will pay the weekly benefit to a child's guardian for the benefit of the child.

When do weekly benefits cease?

  1. The TAC will pay weekly benefits up to the age of 16 years or up to 18 years if the "child" is a full-time student or apprentice*.
  2. The TAC will continue paying weekly benefits regardless of whether the child's guardian begins to provide economic support at a later date.

Education Allowance

Who is eligible to receive the education allowance?

The TAC will pay the education allowance to a child's guardian for the benefit of the child.

Transport Accident Act 1986 reference: s.59(6)(b)

When does the education allowance cease?

  • The TAC will pay an annual education allowance to the guardian of a "dependent child" from the age of 5 to 16 years or up to 18 years if the "child" is still a full-time student or an apprentice*.
  • The TAC will continue paying the education allowance regardless of whether the child's guardian begins to provide economic support at a later date.

Transport Accident Act 1986 reference: s.59(6)(a)

Other Information

Can a "dependent child" receive the lump-sum benefit, weekly benefits and the education alowance if the other parent is responsible for their care?

A child cannot receive the lump-sum benefit, weekly benefits and the education allowance where the other parent (the surviving partner) has sole responsibility for the child's care and is eligible to receive the lump-sum benefit and/or the weekly benefit. Refer to the Surviving Dependent Partner policy.

How does an award or settlement of damages at common law affect entitlement to the lump-sum benefit, the weekly benefit and the education allowance?

The TAC will not pay a lump-sum benefit, weekly benefits or an education allowance to a "dependent child" for any period after an award or settlement of damages is made. Any lump-sum benefit, weekly benefit or education allowance paid prior to the date of settlement will be deducted from the award or settlement of damages.

Transport Accident Act 1986 reference: s.93(11A)

Forms and Brochures

* the reference to apprentice applies to accidents on or after 26 September 2018.