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    Are There Time Limits For Filing a Personal Injury Claim in Queensland?

    May 20, 2024

    Are There Time Limits for Filing a Personal Injury Claim in Queensland?

    The date you are injured is a very important piece of information your lawyer will want to establish as soon as possible so that they can advise you of any important time limits that will apply to your claim. Time limits create a deadline in which notices have to be given and court documents are to be filed. These timeframes are very important and missing them can result in you losing your right to make a claim.

    It is recommended that you call a lawyer as soon as possible and get advice on what time limits will apply to your situation. Making a note and reminders of these dates is wise as the impact of missing the time limits could mean losing your entitlement to claim.

    The courts in Queensland have a three-year limit for you to file documents to protect your claim. If more than three years has lapsed since the accident, and you have not filed court documents it is likely you have lost your entitlement to claim. However, you should still seek legal advice to establish if there are grounds upon which an extension of time may be granted. Although, it is only in limited circumstances that the court will exercise their discretion and extend the limitation period.

    There are also specific rules about giving notices depending on how you were injured.

    Motor Vehicle Accidents

    If you have experienced a motor vehicle accident in Queensland, a Notice of Accident Claim Form must be lodged with the insurer on the earlier of 1 month from consulting a lawyer or 9 months from the date of accident. A lawyer can help you prepare and lodge this claim form within the right insurer and within necessary time frames.

    There are special rules where an unregistered vehicle or an unidentified vehicle is involved. In this case there is no CTP Insurer and much stricter and shorter time limits apply. There is a limit of 3 months to lodge the Notice of Accident Claim Form with the Nominal Defendant. The Nominal Defendant is a Government body who acts as the insurer in these matters. If you do not lodge the claim form in the 3 month period, it is possible to lodge it within 9 months along with a reasonable excuse for delay. After the 9 month period, if the Notice of Accident Claim Form is not lodged with the Nominal Defendant, the right to claim is lost, in legal terms this is called statute barred.

    Once the obligation to give a Notice of Accident Claim Form is met, the three-year limit to file court documents will still apply to motor vehicle accident claims. This is an important date to note because failing to file court documents within that 3-year period will likely result in the entitlement to claim being lost.

    Work Accidents

    Work accidents should be reported to WorkCover within 6 months of the date of the accident. If you are notifying WorkCover outside the 6 month period, a reasonable excuse for delay must be given. This notice can be given to work cover over the telephone, online, by post and quite often it is your medical practitioner that gives the notice for you.

    Like motor vehicle claims, if an injured worker wishes to pursue a common law claim for damages, court proceedings must be commenced within 3 years of the date of accident/injury otherwise the claim will be lost forever or statute barred.

    Public Liability

    Public liability claims can happen in a variety of circumstances, but most commonly involve slips, trips and falls. A Notice of Claim is to be delivered to the party at fault within the earlier of 1 month of consulting a lawyer or 9 months from the accident.

    Like motor vehicle and work accident claims, if an injured person wishes to pursue a common law claim for damages, court proceedings must be commenced within 3 years of the date of accident/injury otherwise the claim will be lost forever or statute barred.

    We recommend contacting a lawyer and discussing the specific circumstances of your accident so that you are properly protected and do not lose any rights by missing any important time limits.

    Learn more about lodging a WorkCover claim in Queensland


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