Canberra jury chooses new CTP scheme

citizens jury

Vehicle owners in Canberra should save $91 to $171 a year under a new CTP insurance scheme. The new scheme will give everyone injured in car accidents access to defined treatment and income support, whether it was their fault or not. People with serious injuries caused by another driver will be able to claim higher amounts in the courts.

Current scheme

The current CTP scheme in Canberra costs vehicle owners an average of $556, the second highest in Australia after NSW. All claims go through the courts, which can be a costly and lengthy procedure. Drivers who cannot prove the fault of another driver are not properly covered by the scheme.

Current details:

Average premium $556
No defined benefits
Common law benefits:

  • Longer term treatment, care and income, plus early payment of medical expenses up to $5,000
  • Death benefit and quality of life benefit uncapped.

New scheme

A citizen’s jury was set up last year to choose the new CTP scheme. The scheme it has chosen is the most radical option of four and has the cheapest premiums.

For the first time, the scheme offers defined benefits for people with minor injuries and pays common law benefits only to people with serious injuries. They must show at least 10% whole body impairment (WPI) for most common law benefits and, for less than 5% WPI, can claim for lost income for only 5 years.

New details:

Average premium $385 to $465
Defined benefits:

  • Treatment, care and income up to 5 years and, if at least 5% WPI, quality of life benefit up to $350,000
  • Death benefit, $15,000 for funeral plus dependant support up to $350,000

Common law benefits (if at least 10% WPI):

  • Treatment and care longer term; income longer term (but 5 years if less than 5% WPI)
  • Quality of life benefit up to $500,000
  • Death benefit, funeral costs plus dependant claim.

The ACT government says this model will cover 40% more people and give everyone earlier access to benefits. ACT Legislative Assembly will debate the bill by the end of 2018. This means the new CTP scheme should begin in mid-2019.