The Road Accident Fund Amendment Bill, 2011 was recently published for public comments.
The Bill seeks to address the situation which arose as a consequence of the Constitutional Court’s judgment, handed down on 17 February 2011, in the matter of Mvumvu & Others v Minister of Transport & Another 2011 (2) SA 473 (CC).
The Constitutional Court held in the aforesaid matter that certain of the capping provisions in Section 18A of the Road Accident Fund Act relating to passengers, as they stood prior to the coming into effect of the Amendments to the Road Accident Fund Act on 1 August 2008, were unconstitutional and invalid in that they constituted unfair discrimination.
The Constitutional Court agreed with the Minister of Transport and the Road Accident Fund that it would not be appropriate to declare the section invalid with immediate or retrospective effect and held further that “Parliament is best suited to determine the extent of compensation to which the Applicants are entitled”. The declaration of invalidity was therefore suspended for a period of 18 months “to enable Parliament to cure the defects”.
The Amendment Bill essentially seeks to put in place what is referred to as “transitional arrangements for certain third parties” and would apply to persons who have a right to claim compensation from the Road Accident Fund in terms of Section 17 of the “old” Road Accident Fund Act, which is subject to one or more of the limitations imposed by Section 18 of the said old Act, whose claims have not yet been finalized in terms of the old dispensation.
Comments were submitted to the Minister for consideration by the deadline of 20 September 2011.
To download a copy of the Road Accident Fund Amendment Bill, 2011 click here.