Running your own personal injury trial is tough!

September 10, 2018



Crane v Boyd and Allianz Australia Insurance Ltd [2018] QDC 177


James Crane was injured at no fault in a motor vehicle accident.  The insurance company for the other driver admitted fault.  The dispute was over what injuries he sustained and how much compensation he should be awarded.  Mr Crane represented himself in the trial.


Mr Crane said his injuries were head and face strike on steering wheel (damage to teeth), back and shoulders strain and left knee injury.  He was taken to Redcliffe Hospital and released the same day.


He claimed he lost 7 teeth from cracking over the next few months.

Mr Crane was on a disability pension for mental illness and has been unluckily involved in 6 car accidents since 2003.


Unfortunately for Mr Crane he was a poor witness who disputed facts in medical records and did not tender any document himself in support of his claim.


The insurer tendered all of his medical records and called 2 experts who gave opinions on Mr Crane without any cross-examination by him.  Essentially their evidence went unchallenged.


Mr Crane had a long history of dental, neck and back pain.  He denied this history.  This was not believed by the Court.


A short period of aggravation of neck pain was accepted.

No dental treatment was paid for by Mr Crane.


He recovered $2,360 in damages for pain and suffering only, but was ordered to pay the insurer $36,952.95 in costs of the proceedings as he received less than the insurer had previously offered to pay him. 


The end result is Mr Crane owes the insurer nearly $35,000 despite not being at fault for the motor accident.

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