Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


New code protects ACC claimants’ rights

New code protects ACC claimants’ rights

The rights of ACC claimants have been enshrined in a new code, approved by the government after extensive consultation, ACC Minister Ruth Dyson said today.

Ms Dyson said the Code of ACC Claimants’ Rights spelt out ACC’s commitment to high standards of service and fairness in eight claimants’ rights, including the right to be treated with dignity and respect, to be treated fairly and have their views considered, and to be fully informed.

“These rights are designed to meet claimants’ reasonable expectations every time they contact ACC, whether by phone, letter or face-to-face. Each right is accompanied by specific obligations on ACC to ensure the rights are met.”

Ruth Dyson said the code was designed to restore confidence in ACC, which had been weakened during the 1990s when the National Government slashed levies, removed lump sum payments and limited rehabilitation.

She said the spirit of the code was as important as the specific obligations.

“ACC handles 1.4 million claims a year. The code recognises that a positive relationship between claimants and ACC staff, built on mutual respect, is essential if ACC is to achieve its primary focus of helping injured people to make the best possible recovery and receive fair compensation.”

The code comes into effect in February 2003. It sets out a detailed complaints procedure, starting with a commitment from ACC to resolve issues as they arise at the local level.

Ms Dyson said that, at any point, a claimant could lodge a complaint that would be fully investigated.

“When a breach of the code has occurred, the complaints service can direct ACC to undertake a number of remedies, including a written or oral apology, meeting with the claimant to resolve the issue, or providing interpretation services. If a claimant is not satisfied with the decision, they can seek an independent review.”

Ruth Dyson said the code was in addition to all existing claimants’ rights, and covered the way ACC delivered services. “It is important for claimants to realise that the code is about their relationship with ACC. It does not cover decisions about entitlements, compensation, or treatment for their injury, which will continue to be dealt with under the provisions of the Injury Prevention Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2001.”

Ms Dyson said the Privacy Commissioner and Office of the Ombudsmen could still be asked to investigate matters relating to ACC’s interaction with claimants after the code came into effect.

“However, I would like to think that the code, and the underlying commitment to build positive relationships, will help claimants to resolve difficulties with ACC without the need for outside intervention.”

The Code of ACC Claimants’ Rights as been developed as a requirement under section 44 of the Injury Prevention, Rehabilitation, and Compensation Act 2001. It comes into effect on 1 February 2003.

Copies of The Code of ACC Claimants’ Rights are available from ACC, PO Box 242, Wellington, or on the website

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Werewolf: What Does Winston Peters Want His Legacy To Be?

A lot of people in New Zealand seem to resent Winston Peters and the power that he appears to have. “Appears” being the operative word. In reality, Peters will have power only up to the point that he uses it.

By next week, he’ll have become just another junior player in an MMP governing arrangement, battling to hold onto the gains he was promised. More>>


Rising Toll: Road Safety Needs To Be A Higher Priority

Official advice released to the Green Party under the Official Information Act shows that the previous National Government dismissed an option to make road safety its most important transport priority after being told the road toll was rising. More>>


Wellington.Scoop: Arrests At Blockade Of "Weapons Expo"

“We encourage people in Wellington to get down to the Westpac Stadium now for a day of awesome peace action. There will be plenty of food, music and activities to keep us sustained through the day.” More>>


Rorschach Restructuring: PSA Taking Inland Revenue To Court Over Psychometrics

The Public Service Association will be seeing Inland Revenue in Employment Court over its intention to psychometrically test employees reapplying for their roles at the department as part of its controversial Business Transformation restructuring plan. More>>


Nuclear Disarmament: Nobel Peace Prize 2017 Awarded To ICAN

Congratulations from iCAN Aotearoa New Zealand to international iCAN, the other iCAN national campaigns and partner organisations, and the countless organisations and individuals who have worked so hard for a nuclear weapons-free world since 1945. More>>


Expenses: Waikato DHB CEO Resigns

An independent inquiry has identified that Dr Murray had spent more than the agreed $25K allocated for relocation costs, and other unauthorized expenses involving potential financial breaches of the chief executive’s obligations. More>>


Wellington.Scoop: Sad About The Trolley Buses?

The Regional Council’s MetLink is today spending money to tell us that it really loves Wellington’s trolley buses, even though they’re all being taken off our roads by the end of this month. More>>


Post-Election: Preliminary Coalition Talks Begin

New Zealand First will hold post-election preliminary discussions in Wellington with the National Party tomorrow morning and the Labour Party tomorrow afternoon. More>>




Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election