Broken Arm Compensation Claims

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Have you suffered a broken arm in Queensland due to the fault or negligence of another party? It's understandable to be overwhelmed in this difficult situation, however, it's important to know your rights to an arm injury claim.

You may be eligible to claim compensation that will cover you for eventualities related to your injury such as potential loss of earnings, medical expenses, and any other negative impacts this incident has had on your life.

This page is designed to guide you through the basics of personal injury compensation claims, simplifying the complex process by providing you with essential information. This includes your rights to compensation, common causes and types of these injuries, the claims process, frequently asked questions, and key time limits in Queensland. 

Smith's Lawyers team of experienced compensation lawyers offer free initial advice and no-obligation appointments at home, in hospital, in-office or via phone. We operate Queensland wide and all claims have no upfront costs or risks of being left out of pocket under our No Win, No Fee, No Catch® promise.

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Your Rights to Compensation after a Broken Arm Injury in Queensland

In Australia, the median time of work lost from serious compensation claims is 7 weeks. Factors such as this could significantly impact you or your family members financially and otherwise, as it is often not only the injured individual who is affected. 

Fortunately, if you've suffered an injury as a consequence of someone else's negligence, you might be entitled to make an arm injury compensation claim.  Various compensation schemes exist to address the different circumstances your injury may have been caused by.

Here's a brief outline of the three main schemes in Queensland:

  • Car and Road Accidents: Under the Compulsory Third Party (CTP) claims scheme, you can claim compensation if you've been injured due to the fault of another driver in a motor vehicle accident. This applies even if you were a pedestrian or a cyclist.
  • Work Accidents: Regardless of who's at fault, if you've suffered an injury at work, you can make a statutory claim via WorkCover Queensland or your self-employed insurance. Also, in the event that your employer was negligent and this negligence led to your injury, you have a right to lodge a common law claim.
  • Public Place Accidents: If you were injured in a public place due to someone else's negligence, you can lodge common law claims against the public liability insurer.
What is a Broken Arm Injury?

A broken arm injury, medically referred to as a fracture, is a condition that involves one or more bones in the arm getting cracked or broken. The arm consists of three main bones: the radius, ulna, and humerus. Any of these bones can get broken in an accident, resulting in extreme pain, swelling, bruising or deformity. 

To identify a broken arm, look for a snapping or cracking sound followed by severe pain, swelling, bruising, deformity (such as a bent arm or wrist injury), or an inability to turn your palm up and down.

In serious injuries, complications may arise such as nerve damage, circulation problems or difficulties in the healing process. Oftentimes, these injuries will require extensive medical treatment and can cause permanent impairment.

Common Causes of Broken Arm Injuries

A broken arm injury can be caused by a result of a multitude of different circumstances. For instance, falls account for 26% of fracture hospitalisations in older Australians, according to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. 

Let's consider the most typical causes: 

  • Road Accidents: Disasters on the roads involving automobiles, bicycles, or pedestrians frequently result in these injuries. The impact of these incidents can be severe, enough to cause broken bones in the arm. 
  • Workplace Accidents: In Australia, over 8,000 workers' compensation claims are made annually for fractures. In certain jobs, especially those involving manual labour or heavy machinery, there's a higher risk of accidents that can result in broken bones.
  • Falls: From slipping in the bathroom and tripping over a loose rug to falling from a height, falls are major culprits behind such injuries. Falling onto an outstretched hand or elbow is the most common cause of a broken arm. It's a human instinct to outstretch our arms to break a fall, inadvertently risking potential damage.
  • Sports-Related Injuries: Engaging in physical sports often comes with a risk of injuries, including broken arms, particularly in contact sports or activities involving high speeds or heights.
  • Violence: Unfortunately, acts of violence such as assaults or domestic abuse can also lead to arm fractures.
Common Types of Broken Arm Injuries

It is important to note when considering your claim compensation amount that treatment of a broken arm depends on the type of break, as some types of breaks may be more severe than others and require more extensive treatment.

Below are some of the most common types of broken arm injuries: 

  • Simple Fracture: These fractures are often the result of a minor fall or collision. They typically heal well but can cause severe pain.
  • Compound Fracture: In these injuries, the bone protrudes through the skin due to a high-impact accident, such as a car accident or a serious fall in public places.
  • Comminuted Fracture: Severe breaks where the bone shatters into multiple pieces, often due to heavy machinery accidents in the workplace. These injuries usually need surgery to repair the fracture and treat related complications. 
  • Buckle (or Torus) Fracture: Common in children, where one side of the bone buckles upon itself without breaking, usually caused by mild falls or collisions.
  • Greenstick Fracture: Another injury common in children, where the bone bends and cracks but doesn't break completely. Often the result of falls or sport-related accidents.
Workers Most at Risk of Broken Arm Injuries

Certain industries and roles have a higher risk of a workplace accident. This may be due to specific workplace conditions, the nature of the tasks performed, or the increased likelihood of accidents. 

Here are some of these higher-risk professions: 

  • Construction Workers: Workers on construction sites are at an elevated risk due to the heavy machinery used, often at heights, making falls more dangerous.
  • Agricultural Workers: Those working in agriculture can face risks from falls, livestock, machinery with potential to cause crush injuries, and the uneven terrain they frequently work on.
  • Healthcare Professionals: Manual handling of patients, slips, trips, and falls make healthcare professions particularly risky for such injuries.
  • Transport and Delivery Personnel: The delivery industry often involves lifting heavy objects, potentially leading to loss-of-control incidents and resulting in broken arms.
  • Food Service Industry: Fast-paced and often cluttered environments in this industry can lead to trips, slips, and falls, heightening the risk of an injury to the arm.

To check your compensation entitlements, request a free case review with our expert lawyers.

Understanding the Broken Arm Compensation Process

In Queensland, 7,268 claims were lodged in 2023 for fracture injuries, so you're not alone. The crucial first step is to seek medical attention, your health is paramount. Following this, initiating a compensation claim for a fractured arm injury is a process perhaps easier than you might suspect. The key is having competent guidance from the start. 

Below is an outline of the steps involved: 

1. Seek free initial legal advice

The first step is to get in touch with a law firm that specialises in compensation claims for broken arm injuries. Such a firm will have the necessary expertise and understanding of the complexities of Queensland law and can confirm your legal options including eligibility to make a claim.

2. Engage a personal injury lawyer

After an initial phone assessment, the next stage is a no-obligation consultation to explain the process and client agreement in more detail and to gather initial key information relating to your accident and injury to help assess your case and your injury and identify the liable party. The client agreement will also be explained so you can understand the terms under which the personal injury law operates on. Smith’s Lawyers runs all claims risk-free with no upfront costs.

3. Gather evidence to build your case

Once your compensation matter is opened you will be allocated a personal injury lawyer who will start gathering the required evidence to build a strong case and to determine liability. This may include medical reports, accident reports, witness statements, CCTV or dashcam footage or documentation of any loss of earnings due to your injury. Further down the track when your injuries have settled, your law firm may arrange for independent medical assessments such as occupational therapy assessment to assess your ability to work, long term recovery prospects and so on.

4. File your arm injury claim

Your personal injury solicitor will lodge a notice of claim and negotiate on your behalf with the liable parties, typically with their insurance companies (or their legal representatives) such as the CTP insurer of the at-fault party for car and road accidents or WorkCover Qld for workplace accidents. 

5. Negotiate with the at-fault party's insurer

Negotiations with the insurance company aim to reach a fair settlement that covers your medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages.

Most cases are settled out of court in a compulsory conference, an office based meeting involving yourself, your personal injury solicitor and a barrister they have engaged to lead the negotiations along with the legal representatives of the at-fault party's insurer. 

In the unlikely event that a settlement cannot be negotiated out of court, proceedings can proceed to court. In most ‘no win, no fee’ agreements, you could be liable for the other side's legal costs if your case is not successful in court. Smith’s Lawyers No Win, No Fee, No Catch® promise protects you from this risk and means you cannot not be out of pocket.

6. Arm injury settlement payment

If your claim is successful, you will receive a tax free, lump sum payout. The amount received will depend on different factors, including the severity of your injury, any impact on your earning capacity, and any medical expenses incurred. Legal fees are charged for the work completed only if there is a successful outcome.

Seek free legal advice ASAP: Remember, each case is unique, and the process can vary based on the specifics. It's suggested to seek professional legal advice and have your case reviewed by an expert team to guide you in this journey. Smith's Lawyers are experts in personal injury claims and offer a Queensland-wide service with free initial advice to get you started in your claim process.

What Evidence Do I Need To Support My Broken Arm Compensation Claim?

When lodging a claim for a broken arm injury, it's critical to gather and present several pieces of evidence. Having a comprehensive collection of supporting documents can bolster your claim and increase the likelihood of securing the compensation you deserve. 

Here's a checklist of the evidence you should compile: 

  • Medical Reports: This includes the initial report when you were treated, as well as any subsequent visits to the hospital, treatment plans, surgeries, and ongoing physical therapies; these reports will present the extent of your injuries and the long-term impact.
  • Photographic Evidence: Photos of your injuries, the location of the incident, and any hazards or contributing factors can be compelling visual evidence.
  • Witness Statements: If there were witnesses to the accident, their accounts can significantly contribute to backing up your version of events.
  • Employment Records: If your arm injury has resulted in time off work or loss of income, provide documents that clearly indicate this - pay slips, contracts, or letters from your employer.
  • Expense Documentation: Keep records of any additional costs you've incurred as a result of your injury including medication costs, travel expenses for hospital visits, or modifications made to your home.

Calculating Your Compensation Amount 

The compensation amount awarded for a broken arm injury isn't a fixed figure ― it varies. Several factors are considered in its determination. 

Some of these include: 

  • Severity of the Injury: A more severe break or a complicated injury requiring extensive treatment or rehabilitation will command a higher compensation amount.
  • Economic Loss: This covers loss of earnings due to time off work, as well as potential future lost earnings if the injury has affected your capacity to work.
  • Impact on lifestyle: If your injury has negatively affected your lifestyle or ability to participate in hobbies or social activities, you may be entitled to more compensation.
  • Medical expenses: The cost of medical and rehabilitation treatments, prescriptions, and other related expenses are calculated into the final compensation.

Payouts also vary because two people with a similar injury could have different circumstances that cause them to receive drastically different settlements. 

For instance, let's consider two people, one a young professional athlete and the other a retired individual. Both suffer from a broken arm resulting from an accident.

The amount of compensation the professional athlete will likely receive is much higher because they may have lost significant wages and possibly their career. On the other hand, the retired individual, who doesn’t rely on their physical ability for income, may receive a lesser amount.

These instances illustrate why it’s critical to have skilled representation from a law firm when making a claim for compensation. This can help ensure your claim accurately reflects the full impact of your injury, and that you receive all the compensation you're entitled to.

Time Limits for Broken Arm Injuries

Typically, you have three years to file personal injury claims for compensation, whether from a road, work, or public place accident. 

More specifically, for work-related injuries in Queensland, you have:

  • 6 months from when the entitlement to compensation arises (this is usually when the injury occurs, or the day on which the individual is assessed by a doctor) to lodge a claim with WorkCover Queensland (or your employer's workers' compensation insurer if self-insured). This is an essential first step for all cases regardless of fault.
  • 3 years from the date of the accident/injury to start court proceedings for a common law claim. These claims can be run in addition to a standard WorkCover claim where the negligence of your employer or another party caused or contributed to your accident and injuries.

For motor vehicle related injuries, in Queensland you have:

  • You have 9 months from the date of the accident or when injuries first became apparent to lodge a Notice of Accident Claim Form (known as a 'NOAC') with the Compulsory Third Party Insurer (CTP Insurer). A “reasonable excuse for delay” can be provided outside the 9 months, but must be within 3 years of the accident or you will be barred from making a claim. 
  • Or, you have 1 month from when you first consult with a lawyer about the possibility of making a claim to lodge the form. When running a claim with Smith’s Lawyers, your appointed solicitor will help you complete and submit this form.  Note: This time limit is the earlier of the two (1 month vs 9 months), so if you have spoken to a lawyer about your potential claim, you must lodge the NOAC within 1 month.
  • Where the motor vehicle at fault cannot be identified (such as in a hit and run) or the vehicle was unregistered, you have 3 months from the date of the accident to lodge a Notice of Accident Claim form with the Nominal Defendant. For these claims, if you have missed the 3 month period, a reasonable excuse can be provided, but it must be provided within the standard 9 month limit otherwise you will be barred from making a claim
  • After the Notice of Claim Form is lodged, you have 3 years from the date of the accident/injury to start legal proceedings.

However, certain specifics can impact this time frame. For example, if you're under 18 years of age, the three-year time limit won't start until your 18th birthday

There could be other exceptions as well. For instance, if one has been incapacitated or couldn't have reasonably discovered the injury earlier, the period could be extended.

That's why it's crucial to seek legal advice promptly after an injury. Waiting longer can also impact the ability to gather reliable evidence to prove liability.

At Smith’s Lawyers, we understand the complexities surrounding compensation claims and are ready to support your journey through the legal process. We offer free and no obligation case reviews to check your legal rights, adhering to our 'No Win, No Fee, No Catch®' promise. This is a risk-free reassurance - if your claim isn't successful, you won't have to pay a thing.

To check your compensation entitlements, request a free case review with our expert lawyers.

Frequently Asked Questions

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How can a broken arm injury impact the ability to work?

Living with a broken arm can significantly impact a person's ability to work in several ways, affecting daily tasks and responsibilities. You may find it challenging to perform physical tasks that were once straightforward. For example, typing, lifting, and driving may be difficult, if not impossible.

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What should I do immediately after a broken arm injury to support my claim?

Immediately after sustaining the injury, it's crucial to seek medical attention and to document the injury and its severity. Following your doctor's advice and keeping all medical records is vital. Additionally, gather evidence of the accident, such as photos, witness statements, and an accident report, if applicable. This will help your personal injury lawyers build their case for compensation for you. 

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How long does the compensation claim process take for a broken arm injury?

The compensation claim process can vary in duration, often depending on the complexity of the case, the extent of the injury, and the responsiveness of the involved parties. Typically, it can take 12 to 18 months. The timeline can be extended if the case goes to court or if there are disputes regarding liability or the severity of the injury.

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Are there any upfront costs or risks?

No, our No Win, No Fee, No Catch® promise at Smith’s Lawyers means there are no upfront costs and you can never be left out of pocket as a result of the claim. Typically with ‘no win, no fee’ agreements, you could still be liable for the other side's legal costs if your case goes to court and is unsuccessful. In the unlikely event that your case goes to court, and you are unsuccessful, we'll cover the costs - so you won't pay a cent to us or anyone else.

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Get expert advice today

To check your compensation entitlements, request a free case review with our expert lawyers. We can explain your options to broken arm compensation claims so you are clear on your rights during this difficult time.

Take our 2-minute free claim check

Fill in the form below to find out if you have a claim.

Last updated:
February 29, 2024

Disclaimer: This information is designed for general information in relation to Queensland compensation law. It does not constitute legal advice. We strongly recommend you seek legal advice in regards to your specific situation. For help understanding your rights, please call 1800 960 482 or request a free case review to talk to one of our lawyers today.