Assessment of Compensation to Road Accidents Victims

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Written By: Kanishka Sharma

Accidents are very commonly seen everywhere and the most common one is road accidents. Every single year many people lose their lives due to road accidents and the most common reason for this is due to their fault only like harsh driving or due to the fault of others, they have to cost their lives. The only remedy for this is the Motor Vehicles Act,1988 and in this act, the offenders are held liable, in the form of punishment they have to compensate the victim. This act aims to prevent motor vehicle accidents and if happens it ensures to give justice to the victim and punishes the person who caused the accident.

What is Motor Vehicles Act ,1988?

It is a comprehensive Act that has replaced the Motor Vehicles Act,1939. It was implemented on 1st July 1989. The first Act that came in force regulating road transport vehicles was the Motor Vehicles Act, 1914. The Act of 1914 was later on replaced by the Motor Vehicles Act, 1939. Later on, with the changing time the need to introduce new changes became urgent so, Motor Vehicles Act, 1988  was enacted. 

It is an Act that covers all the aspects of road transport vehicles.  It is legislation that ensures the welfare of the public after they meet with an accident.  Chapter 2 of the Act deals with the ‘Licensing of Driver of Motor Vehicles’. Section 10  defines ‘Driving License’ as a license issued by the concerned authority to the driver of any vehicle to drive his vehicle otherwise than as a learner. Chapter 3  deals with the ‘Licensing of Conductors of State Carriages’. Chapter 4 of the Act covers ‘Registration of Motor Vehicles. Under this Section 39 tells about the necessity of registration.  

“According to Section 3 of the Act, no person can drive a vehicle without any authorized driving license, and without any driving license authorizing a person to drive a transport he cannot drive such a vehicle. Section 4 states that unless a person attains the age of majority (18 years) he cannot drive a vehicle”. From section 35 to Section 65  procedure for the registration of the vehicle has been laid down and it has been made mandatory to get one’s vehicle registered. It is necessary for the vehicle owner to get third-party insurance as stated from Section 145 to 164

About Accident Claim Tribunal

It is the tribunal that is established for the cases for falling under the Act of Motor Vehicles Act, 1988, and “the main purpose of this tribunal is to ensure the speedy trial of cases and the justice is delivered to the victim”. The claimant must apply to claim within a reasonable period and according to Section 173,  the appeals against the Claims tribunals will lie before the high courts.

“The appeals will have to be filed within 90 days from the date of the decision. If in case the claimant is late to file the appeal then he has to give a reasonable reason for such delay. If satisfied, the Court will then admit the appeal. In case the amount in dispute in appeal is less than Rs10,000/- then it shall not be entertained.  The Motor Accident Claim Tribunal deals with the cases that involve loss of life or property, or in case of injury”. The Claims can be filed in the appropriate Claims Tribunal. The judges who preside over the tribunals are the judicial officers from Delhi Higher Judicial Services. High Courts of different states supervise these Tribunals.

Who can claim compensation in the Accident cases

As per Section 166  of the Act, a person claims compensation if :

  • he has sustained an injury
  •  he is the owner of the property  ,
  • he is the legal representative of the person who died in the motor accident and 
  • he is the agent authorized by the injured person, or by the legal representatives of the deceased, as the case maybe

Where and when can the compensation be claimed?

According to Section 165(1) of the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988 the Claims Tribunal can entitle compensation to the claimant in the following circumstances –

  • When the accident involves death or bodily injury to a person 
  • When the accident results in the loss of any property of a third party
  • When such accidents arise out of the use of motor vehicles

“ The application for the claim can be filed in the following tribunals: the Claims Tribunal where the claimant resides, the Claims Tribunal where the owner of the vehicle resides, and the Claims Tribunal where the accident took place”.

Conclusion

All the laws which are made are for the benefit of the people and for their safety. Motor Vehicles Act, 1988 has been made to prevent accidents and proper implementation plus regulation is important for that laws.  People should know about the laws and it is very for them too to value their lives as it is their responsibility and the government’s responsibility too.  All the laws should be properly followed and it is very important to make sure that the people should follow the laws and provisions as firstly it is their life and it is the act of a person that results in an accident.

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Keywords

Road accidents, Road accidents victim, Compensation, MACT


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