What can I expect in a common law claim?

What can I expect in a common law claim?

If you have been injured at work, you are able to claim benefits from WorkCover. To obtain further compensation you must bring a common law claim.

But how long does a common law claim take to resolve, and what is the average payout?

How long does it take to resolve a common law claim?

Once you have a serious injury certificate you commence your negligence case (known as a common law case).

The shortest average duration of a complete common law case is 6.1 months. This can occur where a serious injury certificate is granted by the lawyers at WorkCover and the damages are settled at an informal conference.

If the injured person has to go to court to get a serious injury certificate, and their common law case is resolved without a court appearance, the average time frame is 17.4 months. This can be shortened by taking advantage of the expedited list in the County Court. Redlich's Work Injury Lawyers put cases on this list as often as possible.

If a serious injury certificate is granted, and the common law case goes to trial, the average duration from start to finish is 23.2 months.

If the injured person has to go through two court cases - one to obtain the serious injury certificate, and one for damages, the average duration extends to 38.4 months. Redlich's Work Injury Lawyers make every effort to ensure that cases progress as fast as possible. Unfortunately, due to delays outside our control, cases can still be going six years after the original injury.

How often does WorkCover grant a serious injury certificate?

60% of all applications to WorkCover for a serious injury certificate are granted. Remaining applicants need to make an application to the County Court.

The County Court application, known as an Originating Motion can take one to two days and requires the injured person (called a'Plaintiff') to ask a Judge to decide if their injury is serious.

Serious injury cases in court generally have a 92% success rate. At Redlich's Work Injury Lawyers, our success rate is higher as we will only go to Court if we believe you have reasonable prospects of success.

What is the average payout for damages'

Recently reported statistics from WorkSafe show that the average amounts of damages currently being paid to injured workers (keeping in mind that the lowest figure used to compile these averages is zero) are:

  • Pain and Suffering only - Approximately $105,000
  • Both pain and suffering and loss of earnings - Approximately $285,000
  • Average total damages - Approximately $190,000

For more information contact one of our expert injury lawyers on (03) 9321 9988 for free advice about your circumstances.

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