As well as compensating those injured in accidents on South African roads, the RAF compensates families for loss of support in the case of the death of a breadwinner.
You can also claim compensation for funeral costs.
What you can claim
In the tragic event of losing a family breadwinner to a road accident, it may be possible to claim for loss of financial support.
The value that can be claimed is capped based on a value set in 2008 (R160,000), adjusted quarterly for inflation. The latest statutory limit on loss of support claims is published in a government gazette.
Compensation for funeral costs from the RAF is limited to the costs of cremation or burial.
For more details of exactly what can be claimed, see What You Can Claim if a Family Member Dies in a Road Accident.
Time limits on loss of support claims
In an accident where the identity of the negligent driver or vehicle owner is known, a claim for loss of support must be submitted to the RAF within three years of the date of the accident or the date of death, if the claimant is over the age of 18 years old.
If a minor is claiming compensation for loss of support, the claim must be submitted within three years of the minor reaching the age of 18.
In all loss of support claims arising from hit-and-run accidents, claims must be filed within two years of the date of the accident.
What documents must be submitted with the claim?
For a claim to be valid, you need to complete form RAF 1 properly in terms of the Act and submit it to the RAF. The form asks for basic information about the claimant, as well as details of the accident.
If the person died immediately, no medical report is required – but if death was subsequent to the accident date, the treating medical practitioner completes a medical report, which should be attached to the form.
In addition, you need to submit documents to substantiate your claim. In the case of a claim against the RAF due to someone having been killed in a motor accident, these should include:
- a certified copy of the deceased’s identity document
- a death certificate and, if available, post-mortem report
- a marriage certificate, if the claimant is the spouse of the deceased
- an unabridged birth certificate, if the claimant is the child of the deceased
- proof of funeral costs
- financial statements, salary slips or income tax returns providing proof of the deceased’s income.
For more details, see What You Need to Make a Claim.
Winning your case
RAF claims can be complex. We strongly advise that if you plan to claim from the RAF due to the death of a family member, you hire an experienced attorney to oversee the claim. The attorney can guide you through the claims process, ensure that you provide the necessary substantiation to the RAF and assist you during settlement or court proceedings.