30 Aug Were you a passenger in a motor vehicle accident?
WERE YOU A PASSENGER IN A MOTOR VEHICLE ACCIDENT?
Did you know that the Road Accident Fund Act was amended in 2008? Prior to 2008 passengers in a taxi, where the driver of the taxi was the sole cause of the accident, could only claim a maximum of R25 000.
After the amendment passengers are allowed to receive equal compensation to that which other victims of road accidents are entitled to. This applies to all passengers involved in a motor vehicle accident.
If you read the undermentioned story then you as the claimant will understand why the change in 2008 was a victory:
Anele Mvumbu was seriously injured in an accident on 14 February 2005 when the driver of an unlicensed minibus taxi in which she was travelling lost control of the vehicle, which then rolled, killing the driver. As a result of the accident, Mvumbu had to be hospitalised for two months and her right foot was partially amputated. This resident of an informal settlement is now permanently disabled and has been unable to retain permanent employment as a result of her injuries.
The Fund had admitted liability but had pointed out that as a taxi passenger, her third-party claim was limited to R25 000 special damages only, and that it had already paid out more than that amount for her medical treatment.
A claimant who was a passenger only need to prove the proverbial 1% negligence of the insured driver in order to succeed with their claim. This is applicable on cases where, the driver of the vehicle in which the claimant was a passenger was negligent, or if the other driver involved in the motor vehicle accident was negligent.
A further change to the Road Accident Fund Act in 2008, is that no claimant may claim directly from the negligent party for the injuries that they sustained. Passengers in an un-roadworthy taxi or bus have no claim against the owner or operator of the vehicle. You can claim against the RAF only, and it is therefore important to know what cover you have from the RAF.