Regrets: When Yesterday is too Late

We all have those stories when procrastination, doing something we are anxious about or are not comfortable with, rears its head and bites us on the proverbial backside. I remember so many times when I was at school not finishing my homework and enduring the long walk to school telling myself how stupid I was for not doing it. And then at Uni when a legal assignment was due and doing an all-nighter to finish it on time but regretting not having put more research and editing time into it. Even these days there are those things that we put on the back burner saying we will get to them, only to find they hit you over the head and you run around like a mad chook trying to fix things up.

But sometimes the bar is so high that our decision to delay or worse, not knowing we have an issue, hits us like a ton of bricks and life as we know it evaporates.

For example, consider the following, it may seem far-fetched but this is right in your face that you need to prepare many of your clients for now – particularly those with family homes. In NSW there is a Bill before Parliament – Public Health Amendment (Vaccination Compensation) Bill 2021 – read this carefully and consider the consequences, which provides as follows:

Section 137 Liability to workers required to be vaccinated

(1) This section applies if a relevant body requires a worker to be vaccinated against a disease prescribed by the regulations.

(2) The relevant body is liable to pay compensation to the worker for any injury, loss or damage suffered by the worker as a result of the vaccine.

(3) The relevant body continues to be liable to pay compensation to the worker until the worker’s death, even if the worker ceases to be employed or otherwise engaged by the relevant body.

(4) In this section—

     Relevant body, in relation to a worker, means the person or body that employs or otherwise engages the worker.

     Worker of a relevant body includes a person engaged by, or on behalf of, the relevant body under a contract for services, but does not include a volunteer.

Now whether this Bill gets up and implemented or takes favour in other states which put simply an employee is afforded the right to sue an employer for loss and damages suffered because the employer required the employee to be vaccinated! And this right to sue for loss or damages carries through to death.

So how might it happen?

John Smith runs a successful coffee shop in Singleton and told all of his staff to be vaccinated.  Jenny worked at John’s business in 2021 for a three month period and dutifully got a shot of the Super Covid vaccine. John retired from the business in 2028, used his super to pay off his mortgage and buy a caravan to do some grey nomading. In 2036 Jenny collapsed and was found to have a heart condition and her lawyer sues John under section 137 which was enacted in 2022.

John, who at this stage is 75, finds his house and caravan are in the firing line as the case drags on for years while Jenny’s lawyer tries to show her heart condition is linked to the vaccine. John’s legal expenses are expected to be $250,000 or more.

Now all of this is conjecture and the Bill may never be enacted but who knows who will be liable in the future? My legal partner Tony Anamourlis sends all the latest litigation cases dealing with Covid almost every day. We simply don’t know what we don’t know.

But one thing we can do is protect our family wealth. Why any employer would have their family home, investments and business open to litigation – for any means or purpose is beyond me, when there are a range of solutions.

And you are the person who can deliver them with the help of LightYear Docs, Abbott & Mourly lawyers and becoming a member of the Succession, Asset Protection and Estate Planning Advisers Association – www.sapepaa.com.au

If you would like to know more about the range of LightYear Docs and Abbott & Mourly Lawyers family and business wealth protection solutions please contact ben@lightyeardocs.com.au or travis@lightyeardocs.com.au and become a protector for your clients.

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