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Car Accident Lawyer – Nominal Defendants

If you or someone you know has been injured in a car accident, compensation may still be available even if the identity of the person at fault and liable is unclear.

These situations can arise where there is a hit and run scenario, when an uninsured or unregistered driver is at fault, or other circumstances make it difficult to identify the individual against whom a claim can be made.

The law in NSW appoints a Nominal Defendant in most situations where the at-fault individual cannot be identified for the purposes of claiming compensation. In order for this to occur the claimant must prove that certain steps were taken towards attempting to identify the individual. That is, the courts require “due search and inquiry” be undertaken to ascertain the person’s identity before the claim can proceed.

If this process has been carried out and sufficient evidence of it has been obtained, confirmation that due search and inquiry was performed can be provided by oral evidence or affidavit of the person who undertook the process.

Once this has been established, a Nominal Defendant can be appointed and the case can proceed as though the Nominal Defendant were liable for the claimant’s injuries.

Until September 1 2015, the Motor Accidents Authority acted as the Nominal Defendant in NSW. The State Insurance Regulatory Authority has since assumed these duties, although the responsibilities remain largely the same.

It is recommended that advice from an expert car accident lawyer is obtained as soon as possible following an accident. This will ensure the injured person’s rights are protected and evidence is obtained as early as possible to enable the success of their claim.

Our Car Accident Lawyers can provide practical solutions and exceptional results in relation to your compensation claim on a No Win, No Fee basis.  Call 1300 773 529 or email a car accident lawyer at We can then arrange an initial telephone conference to discuss.

Matthews Folbigg has over 50 years’ experience protecting personal injury and compensation rights of people living in Parramatta and the Hills.