Is the National Redress Scheme right for you?

The National Redress Scheme was created following the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. It is a scheme that is available for survivors of sexual abuse, where institutions with a history of abuse opt-in to the Scheme.

Survivors may be eligible for counselling, support and a monetary payment. Survivors will sign an agreement that prevents them making a civil claim against the institution at a later stage, which is why it is important to seek legal advice first.

The ABC has reported that survivors of child sexual abuse who have decided to apply through the Redress Scheme are facing significant delays. The aim of the Scheme was to provide a relatively fast outcome for survivors, hoping for applications to be assessed and paid within 6 months of applying. Unfortunately, reports have shown that only 27% of cases have been resolved.

There are many reasons for the delays, but one of the main ones is that the institution or organisation has not chosen to opt in to the Scheme. A local Canberra example is Forrest Tennis Club’s failure to opt in to the Scheme. You can see which institutions have signed up to the Scheme here

Under the Scheme, survivors can receive counselling, an apology from the institution, and a monetary payment up to $150,000.00, with the average being approximately $85,00000. When an individual accepts an offer from the Scheme, they are prevented from making a civil claim against the institution, which can result in a larger, and more adequate compensation payment. For example, a civil law claim also allows you to claim loss of income or earnings (including superannuation) for the past and future. This cannot be claimed under the Scheme.

How can Elringtons help me?

It is important to speak with a lawyer to help you understand your legal rights and the options available for you before you decide to apply under the Scheme. We can give you advice on this and help you work out which option is best suited to your circumstances and what you want out of a claim. We also offer a free initial consultation for new clients.

We have experience working with survivors of child sexual abuse, so we understand how incredibly difficult it can be for people to come forward and share such sensitive information. Gabby Bridger is our solicitor who primarily works with survivors of child sexual abuse, along with other clients who have psychological injuries. Gabby is empathetic and understanding. She also holds a Bachelor of Science in Psychology, which has given her a deeper understanding of trauma and psychological injuries.

We are happy to have an obligation-free and confidential discussion with you, or a family member or friend, to discuss options and how we can help you. Contact Gabby Bridger:

e: gbridger@elringtons.com.au | p: 02 6206 1300

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