Who will pay under a new system?


Who pays under the new system if we’re not relying on road accident fund compensation?

A new system, RABS, is being promoted by the Road Accident Fund on the basis that it will remove the attorneys from the system by removing the fault aspect. This is how it impacts RAF compensation processes:

Removing the fault aspect is however not going to make the administrative staff of the Road Accident Fund (who cannot settle claims for past medical expenses alone now) suddenly start doing their job if they were not doing it previously. It will not tackle the administrative incompetence of the people handling Road Accident Fund compensations and payouts. The bottom line is, in creating a situation where suddenly you introduce a whole new group of claimants, those who cause the accident, you will have to source additional funds and your options are either to increase the moneys that are paid to the Road Accident Fund, which is not something that would be politically popular or, as the Road Accident Fund has suggested doing, decrease the existing benefits! In short, it is the innocent victims of future accidents who will pay so that the guilty may receive RAF compensation. They will pay by getting less money and less compensation than they would under the current system. Legal costs will be reduced by simply denying one’s right to any paid legal representation until you have gone through various administrative hoops and mechanisms at the Road Accident Fund.

Sign our petition today and contact us to learn more about our suggested changes to the current Road Accident Fund payment process.

Attorneys achieve superior results

Almost every attorney who does this work would have numerous examples of clients who have been offered one amount, only for the attorney to achieve a far superior result of course, and this appears to be rule rather than the exception. Attorneys have examples of cases where clients suffered brain injuries and were offered R35 000,00 by the Road

Accident Fund, only for the firm of attorneys to settle it in court for R1,3 million. So, not only will innocent victims be deprived of much compensation, they will also have very little negotiating or bartering power with the Road Accident Fund on a new system which is designed to exclude you from having the right to an attorney and leave you entirely at the mercy of a claims handler at the Road Accident Fund and what the figures are they come up with.

In addition, the already hard to prove general damages will be removed altogether and the loss of income that is currently capped at approximately R240 000,00, which is really a very small amount on international terms, will be reduced further to R44 000,00. The payments will not be made upfront anymore, allowing the Road Accident Fund huge savings if for example that person either loses contact with the Road Accident Fund or dies or somehow obtains a new job. So, those who have suffered severe accidents will have to change their lifestyle, their way of living and make various plans based on a monthly amount that they will be getting, and not on any lump sum that may allow them to more effectively make those changes and maintain an appropriate living standard.

The bottom line

The bottom line is that innocent victims will in some cases be getting 20% of the compensation they are getting now and in other cases nothing at all in terms of compensation that is currently available and all of this simply to ensure everybody in an accident has a claim and the Road Accident Fund does not have to spend any time prior to the amount as to who is innocent and who is not. The innocent is going to pay in terms of reduced benefits for the guilty and all of this is promoted under the guise of “getting rid of the attorneys”.

One can accept that attorneys are universally unpopular, but only a small portion of attorneys are guilty of unethical behaviour and in most instances victims are gain represented by attorneys to ensure that proper cause is taken against these attorneys. The Law Society is there to ensure that proper and due action is taken against its members that act inappropriately. One should be very cynical about what is essentially an insurance company, funded by the taxpayer to try and allow itself to do its business unhindered, unmonitored and without review by professionals acting for innocent victims.