If you are injured and are worried about mounting medical bills and or not being able to work, then you are also sensibly worried that calling a lawyer could well be a further cost that you would want to avoid.
Calling a lawyer for any reason is a significant step that will cause anxiety about the unforeseen costs involved. In the not too distant past if you were injured and had suffered loss then you would need to have considerable resources from the beginning of your matter to employ a lawyer to take on your case to recover your loss.
Thankfully in Victoria in the mid 1980’s mandatory compensation schemes for injuries suffered at work and on the road were established by the Victorian Government. This ensured that if you were injured at work or on the road then you were entitled to receive a significant proportion of your lost income for a period of time and your related medical expenses paid for by what are now known as Worksafe Victoria and the Transport Accident Commission regardless of how the accident happened, with some exceptions.
Not long after these schemes where introduced, personal injury lawyers in Victoria began offering what is commonly referred to as “No Win No Fee” arrangements for their clients as the new schemes allowed for greater access to compensation for injured Victorians. These arrangements were extended to all personal injury matters, including for injuries in public places and medical negligence claims.
The benefit of these fee arrangements, which are generally offered, by all experienced personal injury firms, including mine, is that the injured client does not have to contribute any money up front to commence their claim or make periodic payments throughout the life of their claim if the lawyer agrees to act on their behalf on that basis.
The answer to will it cost you money is ultimately yes, on the condition that you are successful. If you win, then the lawyer will be entitled to charge you their fees for acting on your behalf. If you are successful, then generally most of your legal fees will be paid for by the other side and you will be liable for the difference. It is also essential to know that if you run your matter in Court all the way to judgement and you lose, then under that arrangement you won’t pay your lawyer’s fees, but you are likely to be ordered by the Court to pay the successful parties’ costs.
My advice is that if you are in that very stressful state of being injured and facing an uncertain future that you should call a personal injury lawyer in Victoria for advice as soon as possible. While you are likely to incur legal fees at the successful conclusion of your matter you can be assured that calling an experienced personal injury lawyer:
Won’t cost you any money up front.
Will provide you with advice on the best way forward to recover your loss as quickly as possible.
If you are injured in circumstances that doesn’t involve someone else who can be blamed and pursued for your loss, that the lawyer will still give you the best advice about your other options, including pursuing entitlements under your superannuation scheme or other resources that may be of benefit to you.
Will ensure that you get legal advice in relation to any time limits that may apply to your circumstances. These vary and can be complicated based on each circumstance but are essential to know to ensure that you do not miss out on your rights.
Will put your mind at ease. The lawyer in most circumstances will have advice that there is assistance available for you to recover your loss and access the treatment you need to recover through the various no-fault schemes.
Personal injury lawyers generally have many clients, and their days are filled with helping them get through the various compensation systems as smoothly, quickly and cost effectively as possible. A good personal injury lawyer will advise and guide you through your claim to ensure that you get the best outcome.
The Honourable Justice Emilios Kyrou AO has described the attributes of a good judge in numerous articles over the years. They include essential personal skills such as being courteous, patient, good humoured and aware of cultural differences, but also to be independent in your views and to have excellent communication skills.
A good personal injury who possesses these same skills will ensure that your claim is handled as effectively and timely as possible so that you receive the maximum compensation you are entitled to and that your costs will be kept to a minimum.
If you have suffered an injury and are after advice in relation to your circumstances then contact Paul Burke, our experienced Partner at Longton Compensation Lawyers Melbourne for advice.
*Disclaimer: This is intended as general information only and not to be construed as legal advice. The above information is subject to changes over time. You should always seek professional advice before taking any course of action.*
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