22 Mar 2016

Ditching ACC Court appeals won't resolve the problems

From Nine To Noon, 9:09 am on 22 March 2016

A Government proposal for ACC appeals to be heard by a new Tribunal rather than the District Court is being firmly rejected by ACC lawyers. The Government has been consulting with stakeholders on changes to the review and appeal system of ACC decisions. It's investigating whether to set up an Accident Compensation Appeal Tribunal to replace the District Court for situation when ACC disputes are not resolved by a review hearing. The ACC Minister Nikki Kaye says the aim of the Tribunal would be to reduce the time it takes to deal with ACC appeals - "while maintaining a fair process". But the New Zealand Law Society says none of the options outlined by the consultation paper - including maintaining the status quo - will achieve those objectives. Don Rennie is the Law Society's ACC Committees convenor and Warren Forster is a Researcher at the University of Otago's Legal Issues Centre. He became involved in ACC advocacy after his mother experienced problems with ACC back in 2007.