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ACT LAW SOCIETY IN A HUFF (Over CTP reform)

By Affirmative Action Man 26 February 2011 18

I see the Law Society has taken out full page ads complaining about the proposed Government changes to compulsory third party laws. 

Reluctantly I have to side with the Government on this one. 

I find that the Law Society is a effectively a trade union that exists for the benefit of lawyers.  

If it comes to a choice between justice, benefit to the community or whats good for lining the pockets of lawyers you can be sure of what the Law Society will be supporting.

What’s Your opinion?


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18 Responses to
ACT LAW SOCIETY IN A HUFF (Over CTP reform)
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LSWCHP 6:36 pm 26 Feb 11

“If it comes to a choice between justice, benefit to the community or whats good for lining the pockets of lawyers you can be sure of what the Law Society will be supporting.”

This degree of cynicism is good to see.

liability 9:34 am 27 Feb 11

The ACT Law Society and the ACT Bar Association have joined forces to fight the proposed changes and they have a substantial war chest.

One issue of concern is the 15% whole person impairment [WPI] threshold before you can claim damages for non-economic loss [what most people call “pain & suffering”]. Injuries such as a broken leg or arm will generally be assessed as being less that 15% WPI, which means you can only claim for lost wages and medical expenses and can not claim for the pain and suffering you have been through, or may go through in the future.

NSW has a somewhat similar system to that proposed, but it only requires a 10% WPI before you can claim for pain and suffering.

If the proposed changes go through there will be a lot of unemployed solicitors and barristers in Canberra, as the bulk of work for many firms is motor vehicle accident injury claims.

CanberraBrunette 3:44 pm 27 Feb 11

What Liability has said is correct. I work in the legal sector, and if these changes do go ahead, it will not be “good for lining the pockets of lawyers”, in fact it will be a big cut in Motor Vehicle Accident claims, and the public will struggle to get any compensation. 15% Whole Person Impairment is quite a large impairment when you think about it. In Canberra the current percentage of impairment to be able to claim “pain and suffering” is 0%.

There is also claims that with this CTP change going ahead, that our premiums will be lowered. These will not change at all – insurance companies will not lower premiums and lose money themselves.

The public needs to stand up and fight against this change from happening, as it is not in the best interest of the community.

cross 8:18 pm 27 Feb 11

liability said :

The ACT Law Society and the ACT Bar Association have joined forces to fight the proposed changes and they have a substantial war chest.

War chest courtesy of their victims sorry clients.
Can’t see too many real working people standing up for lawyers crying poor.

m_ratt 10:23 pm 27 Feb 11

I’m quite happy that compensation for ‘pain and suffering’ from a broken arm or leg will no longer be available – surely medical costs and lost wages is sufficient. Hopefully my rediculous CPT premium will decrease.

georgesgenitals 10:50 pm 27 Feb 11

Yep, everyone hates laywers.

Until they need one.

(And no, I’m not a lawyer).

alaninoz 7:27 am 28 Feb 11

I fail to see how pain and suffering, on any scale, can be compensated by money. If the pain can be alleviated then the money for doing so should be considered a medical expense, similarly if the injured person needs additional support to live a reasonable life.

Captain RAAF 8:57 am 28 Feb 11

CanberraBrunette said :

15% Whole Person Impairment is quite a large impairment when you think about it.

Garbage, 15% is bugger all, I’m currently at work, doing my job with a 51% impairment and even that’s going to go up to 60 or possibly 69%….though I doubt i’ll be doing this job then, but my point is, 15 is some hearing loss and a bung knee, which a lot of people have to live with and do so pretty easily.

EvanJames 11:13 am 28 Feb 11

liability said :

If the proposed changes go through there will be a lot of unemployed solicitors and barristers in Canberra, as the bulk of work for many firms is motor vehicle accident injury claims.

When I first heard the news reports about this, that sadly was my first thought. This contingency law has only been with us since the late 90s, but how entrenched it has become. Someone’s paying for it though… I guess it’s us.

I wonder who will win this one?

dtc 11:46 am 28 Feb 11

As I said before, this transfers the risk/cost of an accident from the community as a whole (via CTP) to the individual who is injured – and injured through no fault (or minimal fault) of their own. Basically it means someone can drive through a red light, hit your car, break your arm or give you whiplash that causes pain for weeks and pay only your medical expenses and (maybe) some of your sick leave.

Btw, what side do you think the Law Society should be on if not the lawyers ‘side’?

liability 12:16 pm 28 Feb 11

Captain RAAF said :

CanberraBrunette said :

15% Whole Person Impairment is quite a large impairment when you think about it.

Garbage, 15% is bugger all, I’m currently at work, doing my job with a 51% impairment and even that’s going to go up to 60 or possibly 69%….though I doubt i’ll be doing this job then, but my point is, 15 is some hearing loss and a bung knee, which a lot of people have to live with and do so pretty easily.

15% WPI requires a substantial injury. The NSW Motor Accident Authority has case studies that show what % certain injuries were assessed at. It can be found at

http://www.maa.nsw.gov.au/default.aspx?MenuID=121

Erg0 12:16 pm 28 Feb 11

dtc said :

Btw, what side do you think the Law Society should be on if not the lawyers ‘side’?

The ‘side’ of the law? What’s good for the law is not always good for the lawyers, despite what they’d have you believe.

Lawyers are entitled to have a lobby group acting on their behalf, but pretending that they’re doing it for the benefit of Joe Litigant is plain disingenuous.

EvanJames 12:36 pm 28 Feb 11

Erg0 said :

Lawyers are entitled to have a lobby group acting on their behalf, but pretending that they’re doing it for the benefit of Joe Litigant is plain disingenuous.

That’s pretty-well it. For them to stand there and sententiously state that they are worried for the Good Of Society when all they’re doing is looking after their members is what leads to our cynicism.

On the bright side, this might lead to an end to those annoying ads on TV featuring someone’s kid being a superhero.

dtc 2:55 pm 28 Feb 11

Erg0 said :

Lawyers are entitled to have a lobby group acting on their behalf, but pretending that they’re doing it for the benefit of Joe Litigant is plain disingenuous.

Just, perhaps, lawyers who deal with injured people all day and the consequences of those injuries consider that Joe Litigant ie someone who is already injured – is, in fact, better off getting compensation than not getting compensation.

I mean, do you hear Law societies arguing that more actions should result in jail time – more work for lawyers? Generally you hear them arguing against the suggestion.

Look, agree with the proposition that saving $100 (best case scenario) off your CTP is worth the risk of you having a car accident, or that car accident victims should be treated differently to people injured by doctors or in accidents not involving cars etc. Put your arguments forward and justify your position. But to say ‘well, of course the people arguing against it are doing so solely because it affects their income and therefore they are wrong’ is the same as the Liberal party arguing against the carbon tax because its a tax and just because its a tax.

Keijidosha 3:33 pm 28 Feb 11

dtc said :

Look, agree with the proposition that saving $100 (best case scenario) off your CTP is worth the risk of you having a car accident,

Hang on a sec. So the proposed CTP changes could put an extra $100 back in my sky rocket, trading off the risk of being denied compensation for an impairment of less than 15% of body? Where do I sign?

CanberraBrunette 7:15 pm 28 Feb 11

Captain RAAF said :

CanberraBrunette said :

15% Whole Person Impairment is quite a large impairment when you think about it.

Garbage, 15% is bugger all, I’m currently at work, doing my job with a 51% impairment and even that’s going to go up to 60 or possibly 69%….though I doubt i’ll be doing this job then, but my point is, 15 is some hearing loss and a bung knee, which a lot of people have to live with and do so pretty easily.

Ok well I’m sorry to hear about your impairment, I actually have no clue despite working in the personal injury area 🙂

stuff_n_stuff 8:17 pm 28 Feb 11

I was hit by a car while cycling late last year (driver was at fault). I suffered (amongst other injuries) extensive nerve damage to one of my legs. I’m unlikely to ever regain full use of my leg. Under the proposed scheme, I would be unlikely to qualify for compensation. I don’t have a problem with thresholds or caps, but I do have a problem with a purported objective assessment of what the WPI is. It only took severing a few small nerves to seriously impact my life. Just because the WPI threshold was introduced in NSW doesn’t make it the best or only solution.

Spideydog 8:56 pm 28 Feb 11

CanberraBrunette said :

Captain RAAF said :

CanberraBrunette said :

15% Whole Person Impairment is quite a large impairment when you think about it.

Garbage, 15% is bugger all, I’m currently at work, doing my job with a 51% impairment and even that’s going to go up to 60 or possibly 69%….though I doubt i’ll be doing this job then, but my point is, 15 is some hearing loss and a bung knee, which a lot of people have to live with and do so pretty easily.

Ok well I’m sorry to hear about your impairment, I actually have no clue despite working in the personal injury area 🙂

The good Captain has a lot of wonderful theories and stories to tell. Best that you just “smile and nod” and that keeps him happy …….. 🙂

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