Business Insider Edition

Road Accident Fund: The amount you can claim for loss of income has just been doubled

James de Villiers , Business Insider SA
 Feb 06, 2020, 02:35 PM
  • The RAF has nearly doubled the amount vehicle accident victims can claim for loss of income. 
  • This is the first increase since the cap was first introduced since 2008.
  • The RAF is nearly bankrupt, with R17 billion in unpaid claims. 
  • For more stories, visit Business Insider South Africa. 

The struggling Road Accident Fund (RAF) has nearly doubled the amount South Africans can claim for loss of income per year if they are involved in a vehicle accident. 

This despite the state-owned entity, which has over R17 billion in unpaid claims,  admitting itself that its current financing model is unsustainable.  

In the government gazette, the RAF said that starting from this month, claimants can claim a maximum of R289,957 for loss of income, compared to a previous R160,000 limit. 

Also read: How to claim from the Road Accident Fund without a lawyer — in 3 steps

The original R160,000 cap was introduced in 2008 with the amendment of the Road Accident Fund law. There was no cap on a loss of income before 2008, says RAF’s communications general manager Adriaan Taljaard. The new R289,957 cap is in line with inflationary increases since 2008.

It does not include other damages such as medical expenses and funeral costs. 

“The RAF’s business model remains fault-based. This means drivers at fault are excluded from claiming compensation,” Taljaard told Business Insider South Africa. 

City Press recently reported that the RAF no longer owns its own office furniture because these items are regularly attached by the sheriff of the court to settle outstanding debts.

Addressing concerns of maladministration at RAF, including renting office chairs for more than R1,600 each a month, Taljaard said the entity continues to operate under tough conditions. 

“Internal measures to optimise cash flow management and time-period are maintained and have improved, but the core reality remains that the RAF dispensation is not adequately funded, affordable and sustainable,” he said. 

Taljaard said claims are received and administered in a highly litigious and dispute-ridden environment and many cases take considerable time to be finalised and settled. “This prolonged hardship adds to the social and economic burdens on the poor and vulnerable.” 

IOL reported that 346 claimants took the RAF to court in January to force it to pay out their claims. 

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