How do I claim from the Road Accident Fund?
Below are the steps involved in the Road Accident Fund claims process. Our attorneys will assist you with each of them.
Step 1. FIND OUT IF YOU HAVE A CLAIM
Please fill in our contact form to see if you have a claim and we will get back to you.
When must I claim? It is important to contact us as soon as possible after the accident. This provides us with the best opportunity to investigate the accident and obtain all the relevant documentation, including the police and medical reports we need for the road accident fund claims process. As time passes it becomes more and more difficult to obtain the necessary documentation, which is often sent to the archives of institutions or misplaced. You have three years to lodge a claim with the Road Accident Fund. If one of the vehicles involved is unidentified, this period decreases to two years.
A parent can lodge a road accident fund claim on behalf of the minor until the minor turns 18.
A minor has a period of three years to lodge a claim once the minor has turned 18, unless one of the vehicles was unidentified, in which case the two year prescription period still applies.
For what injuries can I claim?
There are many types of injuries you may be able to claim for. Almost any type of injury may be serious, depending on the long term effect of the injury on the injured person. Have a look at our recent settlements.
Can I claim for loss of income or for monies that a breadwinner can no longer provide?
Yes, contact us and we can explain how this may work.
Of course you may have many questions regarding if you have a claim or not and we will be happy to answer them.
You can email us or contact our offices. Our New Claims Department will be happy to take your call or call you back to hear your case and answer any questions you may have.
Step 2. MEET WITH US
If we believe we can help you receive the best possible settlement, we will set up an appointment to meet you and discuss your road accident fund claim. We are prepared to travel to where you are and consult with you, wherever we find this to be possible.
It is really important for you to choose the right firm of attorneys to represent you, as this can mean the difference between success and failure.
If you find you are satisfied with our offer and agreement to take on your road accident fund claim, you will sign an agreement appointing us as attorneys of record.
Step 3. THE INVESTIGATION INTO YOUR ACCIDENT STARTS
Our New Claims Department takes the first step towards your claim against the Road Accident Fund. Our Investigators make a personal visit to you to obtain important information and to assist you with the relevant paperwork.
The department then prepares your file for lodgement: We complete the prescribed RAF1 form, draft and sign all lodgement documents, obtain SAPS accident reports and sketch plans, visit the accident scene and take pictures of it, contact witnesses for statements, obtain medical records and records of proof of employment, and photograph injuries for claim purposes.
During the investigation process you will be contacted on a regular basis to update you on the progress of your road accident fund claim and to answer any questions you might have.
After our investigations have been finalised, your file will be transferred to our Lodgement and Litigation Team.
We look at all angles… and find proof of the facts. Every bit of evidence is examined: the point of impact, final resting positions, skid marks, scrub marks and gouge marks. We also investigate road and traffic parameters and other related circumstances (e.g. driver behaviour and/or impairment, weather and light conditions).
Step 4. YOUR CLAIM IS LODGED
Our team of attorneys is passionate about what they do. They know that by trying to settle your claim for the highest amount possible against the Fund, they will be able to make a difference in your life, and some of the financial burdens you face will be eased.
Once our attorneys lodge your claim with the Road Accident Fund, legislation prescribes that the Road Accident Fund has a period of 120 days to investigate your claim.
Once the Road Accident Fund has investigated, the attorneys will start negotiations with them. If negotiations are successful and a satisfactory agreement is reached, your road accident fund claim is finalised. If negotiations are not successful, the litigation process against the Road Accident Fund will start.
Court documents will be exchanged and a trial date will be obtained.
To help your case, expert reports may be obtained. We appoint respected experts in the relevant fields to provide us with medico-legal reports regarding your injuries and the effects of these injuries on your life.
We have access to the best experts in their field. We will set up appointments for you to see them, and where needed, we will pay for the costs associated with you attending these appointments.
Since the Head Office of the Road Accident Fund is in Pretoria, we find it most effective to litigate in the High Court in Pretoria. This Court is unique in that accidents which occurred anywhere in the country can be heard here. This enables us to assist you wherever in the country you may be.
Your trial will take place and your claim will be finalised.
Step 5. YOU RECEIVE YOUR SETTLEMENT AND PAYMENT
Ehlers Attorneys will endeavour to finalise your road accident fund claim in the shortest possible time. We understand the frustration of the court process, as well as the fact that a person who has suffered serious injuries may not be able to work or may need medical treatment which is not provided at government hospitals.