Insurance benefits help to offset financial burden
No one expects to be injured or suffer serious illness. An injury may be caused within your home, at work, on the road or out at a public place. Likewise, no one expects to suffer from an illness rendering them unable to work.
Living with a serious injury or illness affects not just your physical but emotional, and, for some, cognitive well-being. The costs of recovery go beyond medical expenses alone and can quickly erode your savings.
From a legal perspective, there may well be some entitlement to compensation - such as through the workers compensation scheme, Motor Accidents Compensation Scheme or generally under the Common Law. Typically, motor vehicle accident and other claims in negligence will take time to be resolved, particularly where there have been major injuries sustained, such as loss of a leg or arm or spinal injuries. The treatment and rehabilitation could take many months and at times, even years. It may not be possible to resume your normal work, which can cause further financial strain.
The real issue for many people becomes how they can remain financially independent whilst their compensation claim is finalised.
Have you suffered a serious injury or illness? Are you struggling to maintain financial independence? If so…
…Did you know that you may have insurance in place that could well be the difference between affording to pay the bills and living comfortably or being financially devastated?
Did you know most members of superannuation funds have Total Permanent Disability ("TPD") and/or income protection coverage by default?
A TPD claim is the early release of your super account balance plus any TPD insurance.
Generally, you may bring a TPD claim if:
- you have TPD cover as part of your superannuation membership;
- your membership is active, that is, you must be paying your insurance premiums; and
- you are considered to satisfy the definition of totally and permanently disabled as per the insurance policy.
The TPD definitions and requirements can differ between superfunds. Commonly, you must establish that you have been unable to work for a period of 6 months due to a medical condition that renders you unlikely to ever engage in any work for which you are qualified by reason of your education, training and experience.
Did you know that you do not have to be unfit for all work to access a TPD insurance benefit? For example, if your qualifications are limited and you have only ever engaged in manual work (and can never return to such work because of your medical condition), your claim could still succeed?
Did you know if you are now working on a part-time basis as a result of your medical condition, you may also be entitled to a TPD insurance benefit?
Have you been diagnosed with a terminal illness? If so, did you know that you may be entitled to make a Terminal Illness Benefit ("TIB") claim for the early release of your super account balance and death cover amount for which you are insured
The criteria that must be satisfied in order to be eligible for the TIB differs from fund to fund. Generally, however, a claim can be brought if:
- you have death cover as part of their superannuation membership*; and
- your membership is active. That is, you have been paying your insurance fees (they are usually automatically deducted from your superannuation funds); and
- you satisfy the definition of terminally ill as per the superfund's insurance policy.
*Did you know even if you do not have death cover, the Terminal illness Benefit will consist solely of your account balance.
The advantage of pursing the claim as a TIB (as opposed to a TPD claim) is that it is paid tax free during the period you are certified as terminally ill. In addition, those claims are expedited given the circumstances.
To offset some financial burden when trauma occurs, you should investigate whether you have access to some form of compensation and/or insurance benefit.
RMB Lawyers are experienced in pursuing these types of claims. If you wish to discuss your potential claim on an obligation free basis, please email us via this website or contact our office on (02) 4228 8288 to speak to one of our specialist compensation lawyers.