The Australian Government has implemented the COVID-19 Vaccine Claims Scheme (COVID-19 Scheme) to enable individuals who have received a Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) approved vaccine to obtain compensation for related adverse reactions.
Claimants that received the following TGA approved vaccines: Vaxevria (AstraZeneca), Comirnaty (Pfizer), Spikevax (Moderna), or Nuvaxoid (Novavax) can make a claim under the scheme.
To be eligible for the COVID-19 scheme, the claimants must experience one or more of the following clinical conditions:
- AstraZeneca: Anaphylactic reaction, Thrombosis with Thrombocytopenia Syndrome, Capillary leak syndrome, Demyelinating disorders including Guillain Barre Syndrome (GBS), Thrombocytopenia (including immune Thrombocytopenia).
- Pfizer or Moderna: Anaphylactic reaction, myocarditis, pericarditis.
- Novavax: anaphylactic reaction.
Lodging a Claim
For a claim to be made under the Covid-19 scheme, the claimant will need to show proof that:
- they were admitted to hospital;
- how the claim account was calculated; and
- proof to support the amount being claimed.
Several documents will need to be completed to make a claim under the scheme. These documents include:
- the COVID-19 vaccine claims scheme application;
- the COVID-19 vaccine claims scheme medical report; and
- the COVID-19 vaccine claims scheme expenses form.
It is worth nothing that a claim can be made on behalf of someone else, if; you have their power of attorney, you are their legal guardian or administrator, or need to act for them because they cannot act for themselves. To do this, you will need to complete the Authorising a person or organisation to act on your behalf – COVID-19 form with your application. If granted, you must register the court order with Services Australia by taking the original document to a service centre or post a certified copy of the document to Services Australia.
After completion, the documents above must be submitted using a Medicare online account through the myGov website or by using the Express plus Medicare mobile app.
Schedule 1 of the COVID-19 Vaccine Claims Scheme highlights compensation payable to a person who has lodged and succeeded in their claim. Schedule 1 provides compensation under the following heads:
- Out of pocket expenses;
- Lost earnings;
- Gratuitous Care; and
- Pain and Suffering.
Compensation will vary on a case-to-case basis. Factors that will dictate compensation are things like relationship status, number of dependents, etc.
To give an example on how the compensation can be paid; If a deceased vaccine recipient had two children at the time of their death (a child aged 7 and a child aged 11), and the recipient was not legally married to any person (or not the de facto partner of any person) the lump sum compensation payment would be $696,023, calculated as $644,640 plus $33,601 for a child under 8, and $17,782 for a child under 12. Compensation payable under the COVID-19 scheme can vary due to an array of factors.
Processing times also vary per application. Claims that exceed $20,000 may take longer to assess because Service Australia will need to consult with independent third parties (i.e. medical experts or legal experts). If further information is needed, Services Australia will make contact with the claimant.
Should you have any questions or be subject to a claim under the COVID-19 Scheme, we would welcome the ability to discuss and advise where necessary. Our team of lawyers provide clear and timely advice, and provide services on all areas of personal injury/compensation law Australia-wide.
Contact one of our offices today to discuss any legal issues you may have.
Luke McCormack and Gabriel Tirol