Motor Vehicle Accident Claim Farming
Changes to the Motor Vehicle Claims Process in Queensland & Claim Farming – What it means for you
On 5 December 2019 new laws were passed (Motor Accident Insurance and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2019) that implement changes to the current claims process for people injured in motor vehicle accidents in Queensland.
The purpose of the legislation is to prevent claim farming - practices whereby potential claimants are contacted in an attempt to convince them to make a claim. The referral is then often on sold to law firms. The new legislation also prevents the giving or receiving of financial incentives for referral of potential claims.
Claimants are now required to complete a more detailed Notice of Accident Claim Form. They are also required to complete a Claimant Certificate, stating that they are making the claim without any inducement. The Medical Certificate accompanying the Notice of Claim Form is also now more comprehensive.
Lawyers representing Claimants are also now required to complete a Law Practice Certificate, certifying that they have not paid any referral fees for the claim (and other matters) to prevent claim farming practices.
The new legislative changes will ensure that all law firms are placed on an even playing field and that the integrity of the legal system/claims process is upheld. It will also help to prevent people being harassed by cold calls from claimfarmers.
What Should you do if you receive a call from a Claim Farmer?
Claim Farmers will often cold call people and ask something along the lines of ‘Have you had a car accident?’ Or ‘We are calling to discuss your recent car accident?’. If you have received a call of this nature, from an unknown caller (or someone proposing to be an Insurer or from a Government body) then you should hang up immediately and report the call to the Motor Accident Insurance Commission (MAIC) at https://maic.qld.gov.au/contact-us/report/
Claim Farmers are not acting in your best interest and are often willing to sell your claim and personal information to the highest bidder. They do not care whether or not they refer you to a quality lawyer.
If you have any concerns in regard to the above, then please do not hesitate to contact our office on 1300 884 931.