Tel. 09 228 5050 (weekdays 9.00 – 12.00)
The process at the Accident Appeal Board does not carry a charge.
A private party may be able to receive compensation for legal expenses from the opponent. This requires that he/she specifically requests them to be compensated. Another precondition is that leaving him/her to bear the legal costs would be unreasonable, given the ruling in the matter. In practice, this usually means that he/she must win the case.
When assessing the liability of the insurance institution, special account shall be taken of whether the proceedings have arisen from an error of the authorities. A private individual shall not be held liable for the legal costs of an insurance institution, unless the private individual has made a manifestly unfounded claim.
Legal costs can, in particular, be compensated for in situations where the insurance institution is deemed to have made an incorrect decision on the basis of the information at its disposal. Application of this provision involves an assessment of reasonableness. The necessity of the appellant’s actions are assessed from the appellant’s perspective and on the basis of the circumstances that prevailed at the time of filing the appeal. For example, the assistance of a legal expert is usually not necessary if the appeal mainly concerns a medical assessment of the appellant’s state of health. The service principle that generally applies to social insurance also tends to reduce the amount of necessary costs.
Oral hearings may greatly increase legal expenses. The legal aid or agent possibly used by the party is entitled to receive a fee and a refund for travel and other costs from the party. A witness or expert nominated by the party shall have the right to compensation for his/her travel and subsistence expenses and for loss of income. Witnesses nominated by the appeal board are compensated for from the board’s funds. A witness may incur a financial loss, for example due to lost earnings. The witness shall be entitled to an advance on his travel and subsistence expenses.
A party is usually obligated, through an interim ruling issued in connection of the oral hearing, to pay compensation for the witnesses and experts the party has nominated. In other respects, the decision on legal expenses and on which party will eventually bear them is issued in connection with the final decision.