Missing vital information for personal injury claims was one of the key drivers behind Hall & Wilcox’s development of a new web-based application that will solve a long-standing problem for companies that are self-insurers and save them money.
Common law personal injury claims for damages against self-insurers are generally made two to six years after a worker is injured, during which time critical evidence can go missing. Once the evidence is missing, claims typically get protracted and expensive.
To address this issue for self-insurers, leading independent Australian business law firm Hall & Wilcox has launched a Smarter Law solution, Common Law Early Assessment Review (CLEAR).
CLEAR is a web-based application that can be used on any device to help self-insurers easily identify a workplace injury that could lead to a common law claim. The app asks questions designed around a decision tree, then advises whether there is potential for a common law claim or not. If the incident could become a claim, CLEAR guides the self-insurer through a checklist of information that needs to be collected and safely stored ideally within 12 months. This checklist is tailored to the answers to the decision tree questions and the type of incident. The tool also tracks where the information is stored in clients’ systems.
Hall & Wilcox Special Counsel Ilona Strong found information gaps, such as missing witness statements, work practice information and CCTV footage, meant she could not defend her clients as quickly and effectively as she wanted. It also meant the claims usually cost more in both legal fees and damages.
Ilona worked with the Hall & Wilcox client solutions team and with claims managers from many self-insured companies to develop the app. The client participation in a co-design workshop was critical to its development.
Managing Partner Tony Macvean said CLEAR was a great example of the firm’s Smarter Law client approach in action.
‘It’s fantastic to be able to deliver a smarter solution that came about by putting our heads together with our clients to address a real issue they faced,’ Tony said.
‘Based on our modelling, I’m confident CLEAR will deliver significant cost savings to our clients.’
Hall & Wilcox is renowned for its Smarter Law approach, which means looking beyond the status quo to think differently and find better solutions for clients. See initiatives such as: