Wrongs Act Referrals to Medical Panels
Referrals pursuant to the Wrongs Act 1958 are referred to Medical Panels by a party acting for a Respondent.
The Wrongs Act 1958 provides that a claimant is not entitled to recover damages for non-economic loss, in respect of any injury caused by the fault of a respondent, unless the claimant has a whole person impairment resulting from the alleged injury, that satisfies the prescribed threshold level.
A Medical Panel may be asked to provide a Determination where there is a dispute about the degree of impairment resulting from an alleged Wrongs Act injury.
For Wrongs Act referrals, one or both of the following questions can apply:
- Does the degree of impairment resulting from the physical injury to the claimant, alleged in the claim, satisfy the threshold level?
- Does the degree of impairment resulting from the psychiatric or psychological injury to the claimant, alleged in the claim, satisfy the threshold level?
A Medical Panel must provide its Determination within statutory timeframes. This is within 30 days of the Panel examination. The timeframe may be extended if additional information is required for the Panel to form its Determination, or if additional information is provided by the parties involved in the claim. In this case an extension for the Panel to give its Determination will be sought from each of the parties involved in the claim.