Henry Carus + Associates | Injury Lawyers

Are Pedestrians Entitled to TAC Compensation?

Walk signal at a pedestrian crossing | Henry Carus + Associates

Pedestrian TAC compensation may be obtained when a pedestrian is injured by the driving of a motor vehicle. This includes a car, truck, motorcycle, bus, tram, or train.

The amount of compensation available is directly proportional to the severity of the injuries. Recently, our firm obtained substantial compensation for a wife and mother who suffered serious injuries after she was struck by a vehicle in a pedestrian crossing. It was a hard-fought battle that ultimately ended up going to Court, but it was all worth it when the jury found in favour of our client.

Find out if you are entitled to pedestrian TAC compensation. Henry Carus + Associates serve clients in Melbourne and throughout VIC who have been injured in road accidents. Call 03 9001 1318 today for a FREE, no-obligation consultation.

Case Study: Fighting for Fair Compensation for a Mother Seriously Injured in a Pedestrian Accident

Lawyers for Henry Carus + Associates recently obtained a record $1.3 million in compensation for a young wife and mother who suffered serious injuries when she was struck by a vehicle in a pedestrian crossing. We presented the matter in Court and, after 7 arduous days, the jury returned a verdict in our favour. 

The Accident

Mrs. Vartika-Krishna Saxena was walking home after dropping her daughter off at school. She had a green signal to cross the street when a driver failed to yield at the crossing. Vartika was launched into the air before landing on the road.

She was immediately taken to hospital, where doctors diagnosed a burst fracture of the first lumbar vertebra (L1). Retropulsion of the fragments resulted in spinal canal stenosis. This condition causes a narrowing of the spinal canal that puts pressure on the nerves, resulting in pain and weakness in the extremities.

Mrs. Saxena was transferred to St. Vincent’s Hospital for emergency surgery, including a spinal fusion and posterior decompression of the L1 and L2 vertebrae. She subsequently underwent several months of rehabilitation at Broadmeadows Hospital.

The accident left Mrs. Saxena with serious lumbar spine injuries, with the risk of further deterioration in the future. She also experienced psychological trauma. Although Mrs. Saxena was determined to return to her job at a local early learning centre, her injuries made this impossible. Responsibility for supporting the family fell solely on her husband, Gaurav Saxena.

A Long Road to Compensation

Mr. Saxena acted quickly in finding a personal injury lawyer to handle his wife’s claim. He contacted Henry Carus + Associates just days after the accident, and we immediately set to work.

Our team gathered as much information as possible about the cause and circumstances of the accident. We also delved into the nature and severity of Mrs. Saxena’s injuries, particularly how the injuries would impact her life in future.

In the vast majority of cases, we are able to obtain a favourable result without going to court. Unfortunately, the TAC refused to accept that Mrs. Saxena’s injuries were serious and the effects would be permanent. We had no choice but to prepare for trial.

Our lawyers consulted multiple medical and occupational experts, and obtained evidence about Mrs. Saxena’s injuries, prognosis, future, and work capacity. Our goal was to paint a picture of Vartika’s life prior to the accident, the limitations she faces now, and what her future will look like going forward.

The Just Outcome

Mrs. Saxena lived with serious injuries for 4 long years before she had her day in Court. Representing her at trial were Ryan Moran, Associate Lawyer at Henry Carus + Associates, as well as Leading Barrister Paul Czarnota and Junior Barrister Ben House.

We presented the case to the jury over 7 emotional days. On 21 September 2023, the jury voted to award Mrs. Saxena $1.3 million in compensation. This exceptional result will make a big difference in Mrs. Saxena’s life, as well as that of her family.

“What sets HCA Lawyers apart is not just their legal prowess but their transparency, compassion, and genuine commitment to their clients. Throughout the process, we were treated as human beings, not mere case numbers, which meant the world to us.”

Read Mr. Saxena’s full testimonial

How the TAC Compensates Pedestrians

Pedestrians are entitled to the same benefits as other road users if they suffer injury in a transport accident. The TAC is required to pay for the following, no matter who is responsible for the collision:

  • Medical treatments and services
  • Needed support services
  • Income support for those whose injuries cause them to miss work
  • Supporting your return to work

A pedestrian whose injuries meet the criteria found in the TAC’s impairment protocols may also claim an impairment benefit. This one-time lump sum payment provides additional compensation to those whose lives are permanently and significantly altered by a road accident.

Pedestrians who are seriously injured may also pursue common law compensation, provided they can show that someone else was at fault for the accident. Common law damages include loss of past or future earnings and pain and suffering.

What If a Loved One Dies?

According to the TAC, pedestrians account for 15% of all deaths on Victorian roads. In the past five years alone, 175 pedestrians have died in road accidents. That’s an average of 35 pedestrians killed annually.

TAC chart showing pedestrian deaths by speed zone and location
Source: Transport Accident Commission

Nothing can make up for the sudden, unexpected loss of a loved one. However, the TAC does provide compensation for surviving family members:

  • Up to $18,170 in support for funeral and monument expenses
  • Reasonable travel and accommodation expenses to attend a funeral or burial ($6,060 maximum for immediate family living more than 100km from the location of the service)
  • Family counselling support (up to $19,280)
  • Support for a dependent spouse or domestic partner:
    • One-time lump sum payment of up to $216,130
    • Weekly payments totalling 80% of the spouse or partner’s gross weekly earnings (maximum of $1,540 per week)
    • Payments for household tasks and childcare
  • Support for dependent children:
    • Fortnightly payment of $217 gross per week, per dependant
    • Annual education allowance of up to $3,440 till the child or children turn 18
    • $216,130 maximum lump sum payment

Maximising pedestrian TAC compensation after a fatal accident is crucial for your financial security and peace of mind. An experienced lawyer can ensure you get the support and payments you deserve.

What to Do After a Pedestrian Accident

If you’ve been involved in a pedestrian accident, it’s crucial to take certain steps to ensure your safety and protect your right to pedestrian TAC compensation. You need to do the following:

  1. Seek medical attention:
    The first priority is your health. Check yourself for injuries and seek medical attention immediately. Even if you feel fine, some injuries might not be immediately apparent. It’s essential to get checked by a healthcare professional.
  2. Remain at the scene:
    Don’t leave the scene of the accident. Wait for law enforcement and, if necessary, emergency medical services to arrive.
  3. Contact law enforcement:
    Either call 000 yourself or have someone in the vicinity call for you. The police will create an official report documenting the incident, which can be crucial for your TAC claim and any legal proceedings.
  4. Exchange information:
    Get the driver’s name, phone number, and vehicle registration number. If there are witnesses, try to get their contact information as well.
  5. Document the scene:
    If possible, take photos of the accident scene, including the vehicles involved, your injuries, road conditions, and any other relevant details. This documentation can be valuable for your TAC claim.
  6. Lodge a claim with the TAC:
    You can call the TAC or make a claim online. This step should be taken as soon as possible so you can begin receiving benefits. If you are admitted to hospital, they may lodge a claim on your behalf.
  7. Speak to a lawyer specialising in TAC claims:
    If you were injured or lost a loved one in a pedestrian accident, an expert lawyer can help to ensure you get the compensation you are owed and all legal options are explored.
  8. Follow all medical advice:
    Keep appointments with your doctors and other medical professionals and follow their recommendations concerning your treatment and recovery.
  9. Keep detailed records:
    Letters, emails, and other communications may prove important. A good rule of thumb is to keep any and all paperwork and electronic correspondence for the duration of your claim.
  10. Understand the time limit:
    You have just 12 months to make a TAC claim. Don’t wait, as a delay will likely cost you the benefits and additional compensation to which you are entitled.

Read More: Do I Have a Pedestrian Accident Claim?

How Is Compensation Paid After a Pedestrian Accident?

Most compensation after a transport accident is provided on a no-fault basis. Clients of the TAC must demonstrate that their injuries were caused by the operation of a motor vehicle, but they do not need to prove that someone else’s negligence was a factor in the accident.

Disputes are more likely to arise when impairment benefits and common law compensation are at stake. The TAC may try to argue that the pedestrian’s injuries are not serious, or raise questions as to who is at fault.

Generally, a fair settlement can be reached through negotiations with the TAC—particularly if an experienced pedestrian accident lawyer is involved. However, as we saw in the matter of Vartika-Krishna Saxena discussed above, some disputes cannot be settled. When this happens, going to Court may be the only option to obtain maximum compensation for the client.

Contact a Pedestrian Accident Lawyer Today

Pedestrians are highly likely to suffer serious injuries if they are hit by a motor vehicle. Sometimes these injuries prove fatal. If you or a member of your family came to harm in a transport accident in Victoria, the pedestrian accident lawyers at Henry Carus + Associates can manage your claim and seek to maximise your pedestrian TAC compensation.

Don’t wait: Contact Henry Carus + Associates for FREE today.