Yes, you can claim if your loved one’s death has significantly impacted your finances, mental health, or home life. There are 3 types of claims you may be eligible for:
All 3 claims can provide vital financial assistance after a loved one’s passing.
If your loved one dies due to Medical Negligence, you can sue the medical professional who treated them. This is known as a ‘wrongful death’ claim. Importantly, you can only seek compensation for how your loved one’s death affected your life—you cannot claim on their behalf.
While no amount of money can make up for your loss, a successful claim can ease your emotional, psychological, and financial burdens.
You are eligible for a dependency claim if you were a ‘financial dependent’ of the deceased. This means you relied on their money to meet your everyday living expenses.
Generally speaking, only close family members can make dependency claims. This includes spouses, de facto partners, children, parents and siblings. However, distant relatives or non-family members are eligible if they were financially dependent on the deceased.
The exact compensation you receive depends on:
Your compensation is based on the amount of support you would have received had your loved one not passed away.
You can make a nervous shock claim if a loved one’s death caused you to develop a psychological illness. People who witness the death are also eligible to claim for nervous shock.
Only recognised psychiatric conditions like anxiety, depression or PTSD qualify. Unfortunately, you cannot claim for grief or distress alone.
Your compensation will be based on:
You can make a loss of services claim if the deceased provided you with ‘gratuitous services’ like cooking, cleaning, childcare, and school drop-offs. Gratuitous services must be non-financial acts of care.
By definition, gratuitous services are unpaid, so calculating their value can be difficult. The Court can look at several criteria, including:
To prove your claim, you must establish that the medical professional was negligent. This means they owed your loved one a duty of care, they breached that duty, and your loved one died as a direct result.
Yes, your inheritance will affect your total compensation.
If you’re a close relative of the deceased, it’s likely you’ll receive an inheritance after their death. Based on this inheritance, the Court will adjust the compensation you receive for your wrongful death claim.
Say, for example, you are awarded $150,000 for your nervous shock claim. You then inherit an additional $50,000 from your loved one’s will. This is a total of $200,000. However, you will not receive this full amount. The Court will reduce your nervous shock compensation by the amount you inherited (in this case $50,000). This brings your final total back to $150,000. The reduction occurs because the $50,000 inheritance is considered part of your compensation for your loved one’s death.
No, payouts you receive from your deceased loved one’s insurance or superannuation policies do not affect your claim. This includes life insurance and income protection policies.
Unlike inheritance payments, the compensation you receive for your claim is not adjusted based on your insurance and superannuation payouts.
Yes, time limits apply to dependency, nervous shock, and loss of services claims. The exact time limit varies between states, so it’s crucial to know which limits apply to you.
If you’re already outside your state’s limit, speak to us as soon as possible. While time limits are strictly enforced, we can help you apply for an exception. Over the years, we’ve helped hundreds of clients win delayed claims.
|New South Wales||Within 3 years from the date you discovered your loved one died due to Medical Negligence, or 12 years from when Medical Negligence occurred. Whichever date you reach first will apply.|
|Victoria||3 years from the date you discovered* that your loved one died due to Medical Negligence.|
|Queensland||3 years from the date Medical Negligence occurred. You must also provide notice of your claim within 9 months.|
|Australian Capital Territory||3 years from the date you discovered Medical Negligence.|
|Western Australia||3 years from the date your loved one died.|
|South Australia||3 years from the date Medical Negligence occurred.|
* The date you ‘discovered’ the Medical Negligence cannot be unreasonable. You’re expected to make inquiries into your loved one’s death. If you fail to do this, the Court may determine its own date of discovery (when you ‘ought to have discovered’ the Medical Negligence).