How much is a medical negligence claim worth?

Quick answer

The average Medical Negligence claim is worth between $100,000 and $650,000—but many victims receive millions more. Over the years, we’ve secured payouts of up to $10 million for our Medical Negligence clients.

The exact amount you receive depends on the facts of your case, including your age, injury, lost income and medical costs. You’re also entitled to compensation for your pain, suffering, and loss of enjoyment of life.

Speak to us today for free advice on where you stand and how much compensation you could receive.

In depth answer

Medical Negligence payouts are so substantial because improper treatment can have devastating physical, mental, and financial consequences.

Several factors determine how much your claim is worth, including:

  • Your age
  • The amount you earned pre-injury
  • Your future earning potential
  • The severity of your impairment
  • Whether your injury is permanent.

How is my compensation calculated?

Your compensation is calculated based on the actual amount you’ve spent on your injury (the ‘economic’ cost) and your pain and suffering (the ‘non-economic’ cost).

Economic loss

You can claim for economic losses such as:

  • Lost income (both past and future)
  • Lost superannuation entitlements (both past and future)
  • Medical treatment
  • Travel (between home and medical treatment)
  • Professional care
  • Modifications to your home and vehicle
  • Legal costs

Non-economic loss

You can claim for non-economic losses, including:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of enjoyment of life
  • Loss of opportunity
  • Gratuitous care (unpaid assistance from a loved one)
  • Loss of capacity to care for someone who depends on you.

Importantly, most states have specific criteria you must meet before making a claim for non-economic loss. The majority of states also have a maximum compensation amount per claim.

State Requirements for claiming non-economic loss Maximum compensation for non-economic loss (as of June 2023)
NSW Your injury must be assessed at over 15% of the 'most extreme case'. $705,000
Victoria You must meet the 'significant injury' threshold, which is 5% or more Whole Person Impairment (WPI) for physical injuries, or
10% or more WPI for psychological injuries.
Queensland Your injury will be awarded an Injury Scale Value (ISV) between 1–100. Your ISV must be 5 or more to qualify for non-economic damages. $400,655
South Australia Your injury will be given an Injury Scale Value (ISV) between 1–60. You can only claim damages with an ISV of 11 or more. $443,000
Western Australia Your injury must be assessed at over 5% Whole Person Impairment (WPI), and
Your claim must be worth over $23,500. This amount increases every year with inflation.
No cap on damages.
Tasmania Your claim must be worth more than $6,000. This minimum value increases every year due to inflation. No cap on damages.
ACT No requirements for claiming non-economic loss. $250,000

How much is a ‘wrongful death’ claim worth?

In Australia, you cannot sue for a loved one’s ‘wrongful death’—even if it’s clear that the medical professional was negligent. However, you can seek compensation for the emotional and financial impact of their death. This involves a ‘dependency’, ‘nervous shock’ or ‘loss of services’ claim.

You can receive substantial compensation for wrongful death claims. The exact amount depends on what kind of claim you’re making and how the death has affected your health and financial situation.

Dependency claim

You can bring a dependency claim if you relied on the deceased for financial support. The amount you receive is determined by:

  • Your relationship with the deceased
  • The deceased’s income prior to passing
  • The deceased’s contribution to everyday living expenses
  • Your age
  • Anticipated future expenses.

The Court will attempt to compensate you for the benefits you would have received if the deceased had lived. Generally speaking, dependency claims can only be brought by close family members, such as partners, spouses, children, parents and siblings. However, non-family members may still have a claim if the deceased provided for them financially.

Nervous shock claim

You can make a nervous shock claim if you developed a psychological illness due to the deceased’s death. Your claim includes compensation for:

  • Medical expenses
  • Lost income
  • Pain and suffering.

Loss of services claim

You can file a loss of services claim if the deceased provided you with unpaid services like cooking, cleaning and childrearing. The amount of compensation you receive depends on:

  • The deceased’s skills
  • The time they spent on services
  • The burden on yourself and other relevant people.

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