Last Thursday, the Sydney Morning Herald reported on a collision between a trail bike and a motor vehicle and its aftermath.

The rider of one of the trail bikes was killed in the collision and the rider of his friend riding another trail bike is said to have assaulted the driver and stolen his ute before returning to the scene and further assaulting the driver. The story suggests the driver of the ute suffered head and facial injuries and was taken to Hospital.

Does the ute driver have any rights to claim compensation under the government’s new Motor Accident Injuries Act?

If the ute driver was the ‘innocent’ driver, that is the driver who was not negligent and did not cause the accident and he sustained injuries in the original collision, then he is probably entitled to statutory benefits (compensation) associated with those injuries including treatment and income support (if he was still working and not retired). However, he would probably not be entitled to compensation for the injuries sustained in the assault because the assault is an independent action which breaks the chain of causation between accident and injury.

If the ute driver was the at fault driver of the original accident and is charged by the police with a culpable driving offence, then s 3.37 of the Motor Accident Injuries Act prevents him from recovering any statutory benefits (compensation) unless he is subsequently acquitted or the police discontinue proceedings brought against him.

If you or somebody you care about has been involved in an accident, you may be entitled to compensation. For more information, and to arrange a free, no obligation assessment of your claim, please call Stacks Goudkamp on 1800 25 1800 or alternatively make an online enquiry.

Written by Brett Watts.

Brett Watts is an Associate in Tom Goudkamp’s Practice Group. Brett represents people who have been injured in a variety of accidents including motor vehicle claims and public liability claims.

For more information about the incident discussed in this blog, please click here.