The Civil Liability and Other Legislation Amendment
Bill (2009) (QLD) (Bill) is intended to
improve the civil liability and personal injury regime in
The Bill includes amendments to the following legislation:
Civil Liability Act (2002) (CLA)
Civil Liability Regulation (2003)
Law Reform Act (1995) (LRA)
Limitation of Actions Act (1974)
Motor Accident Insurance Act (1994)
Motor Accident Insurance Regulation (2004)
Personal Injuries Proceedings Act (2002)
Personal Injuries Proceedings Regulation (2002)
The most significant amendment to the civil liability
legislative regime is to allow for indexation of monetary amounts,
both for awards of damages and costs. This is the first such
increase in the amounts allowed under the regime since the regime
commenced on 18 June 2002.
The Bill increases the awards for general damages contained in
the Injury Scale Value table of the CLR by 17.8 percent and
increases the provisions of the CLA dealing with costs.
The current provisions state that a claimant is not entitled to
costs if the total damages are less than $30,000 but is entitled to
costs capped at $2,500 if the total damages are between $30,000 and
$50,000. If the Bill is passed, the limits will also be increased
by 17.8 percent equalling $35,340 and $58,900 respectively.
Presumably the capped costs will also increase by the same
percentage to $2,945, but this remains to be seen.
The Bill also allows for an annual increase in accordance with
the percentage change in average weekly earnings over the previous
four quarters. The same uplift and indexation method is applied to
monetary amounts contained elsewhere within the Civil Liability Act
and Regulation, as well as those in the MAIR and Regulation and
PIPA and PIPR .
If the Bill is passed, these provisions will apply to injuries
suffered after 30 June 2010.
Other changes proposed in the Bill are:
allowance of loss of consortium claims by de facto partners
will be allowed
reinstatement of Sullivan v
Gordon damages (compensation for gratuitous care provided to the
claimant by those outside the claimant's household) following
the decision of the High Court in CSR v Eddy
a Certificate of Readiness will no longer refer to readiness
for trial, only readiness for a conference.
provision will be made for the parties to agree to the early
commencement of proceedings, rather than requiring leave of the
the statutory limitation period for dust-disease claims will be
abolished with retrospective operation provided that:
judgement has not been given
the action has not been settled or discontinued, and
there has not been a previous unsuccessful application to
extend the limitation period.
Civil Liability and Other Legislation Amendment Bill
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The failure of a party to call a witness does not necessarily give rise to an adverse inference being drawn in accordance with Jones v Dunkel (1959) 101 CLR 298. An unfavourable inference is drawn only if evidence otherwise provides a basis on which that unfavourable inference can be drawn.
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