Approved Insurers have a responsibility to connect directly with you about your injury claim as quickly as possible, in a fair and efficient manner in accordance with the Regulator's Rules.
You are also able to seek your own legal advice if you wish, at any stage of your injury claim process. If you decide to engage a lawyer, there are limits to the amount of legal costs the Approved Insurer is required to pay.
If the total amount of compensation paid to you by the Approved Insurer for your claim does not exceed $25,000, no legal fees (including disbursements incurred by the lawyer in acting on your behalf such as Court filing fees, investigation enquiries, expert medical reports and photocopying) are recoverable and you may be responsible to pay some or all of your legal costs. Limitations also apply if your compensation exceeds $25,000.
There will always be a component of any legal fees that will not be claimable from your insurer. Prior to engaging a lawyer you should discuss with them:
- the nature of the work expected to be undertaken;
- how you will be charged, including billing methods, expected periodic review of costs incurred and any additional fees or costs;
- an estimate of likely legal costs.
Your lawyer is obliged to provide you with this information in writing. Further information can be obtained on the Law Society website under Legal Costs where you will find information on Your Right to Know, Your Right to Challenge Legal Costs and Costs Disclosure.
The Law Society of South Australia can also provide you with further information and details of legal practitioners who practise in personal injury cases and who can provide legal advice.