Australian TPD Claims  



If you are unable to work because of permanent deafness you may be able to make a TPD claim for a lump sum from the Total & Permanent Disablement insurance contained within your superannuation fund. There is no necessity for you to have been involved in an accident or to have suffered a work related injury to make a TPD claim. If you suffer from total and permanent disability, you may be able to make a TPD claim in addition to receiving your super early as a result of your condition. Our solicitors can advise you in detail as to the requirements of a successful submission, they will prepare all relevant paperwork and will obtain full supporting documentation. Our lawyers will give you free advice on the likely success of your claim to a super fund, without further obligation. It costs nothing to use our free advice service.

Deafness is the inability to hear certain frequencies of sound or any frequency of sound. It can be a partial form of deafness or a complete form of deafness. The diagnosis of deafness is referred in today’s time as “hearing impaired” instead of deaf. The deaf culture movement, however, is opposed to this definition and prefers “deaf” and “hard of hearing” instead. The quietest sound a person can hear is called the “hearing threshold”. It is carried out in several different frequencies because it is often different with different frequencies.

Hearing loss is any situation in which there is a decreased sensitivity to sounds of various frequencies. It can be mild or severe to the point that the sound is not heard at all. An audiometer is the machine used to detect hearing in most people. Sound can be heard simply as an amplitude or gradation of sound. It can also be heard as a perceived clarity of sound. This is usually measured by determining the perception of the spoken word. It measures how well you can understand speech told to you and is done at different amplitudes, particularly at the amplitude of normal speech. There are rare types of deafness that only affect hearing clarity and not amplitude.

Permanent deafness can be classified as conductive hearing loss and sensorineural hearing loss. Both conditions can occur at the same time. Conductive hearing loss means that there is a dysfunction of the passage of sound through the ear drum, middle ear and outer ear. It does not have to be permanent if it is due to blockage of the outer ear or due to damage to the tympanic membrane or bones of the middle ear that can be repaired surgically. Sensorineural hearing loss involves damage to the inner ear, particularly the cochlea. It can also be due to dysfunction of the brain that affects the brain’s ability to hear things. Most of human sensorineural hearing loss is due to problems with the hair cells in the organ of Corti in the cochlea. It can be a genetic or congenital problem or can result from poor development of the ear. Trauma or disease can cause damage to these hair cells.

Damage to the eighth cranial nerve can also severely damage hearing. This is the nerve that leads from the auditory cortex of the brain to the ear itself. You can have damage to the brain so that the sounds are not processed by the brain at all and deafness results. The quality of speech can be affected even though there is normal amplification of sound. This is called central hearing impairment.

Doctors can detect the ability of the ear to hear using an audiometer, which can be turned up to various decibels of sound. The individual wears a set of head phones and listens for quiet and moderately quiet sounds within a quiet environment. The indication of being able to hear the sound means the person isn’t deaf at that decibel threshold. The sounds are also done at different pitches because the pitch of sound can determine the degree of hearing of the ear. An audiologist is a specialist at determining degrees of deafness and hearing impairment can be ranked as being mild, moderate, moderately severe, severe or profound. The ability to hear at various decibels decides how severe the hearing impairment is.

An audiogram plots out the decibels of hearing heard at various frequencies of sound. If it affects all frequencies the same and is severe or profound, the individual is considered to be deaf. Doctors can determine hearing loss in terms of percentages of loss of hearing. This is how it is done for insurance companies and for legal claims. There is a standard of percentage of hearing loss that is used for legal purposes.

Another test for hearing is known as the speech in noise test. This is the ability to understand speech during a noisy environment and is sometimes the first thing to go in deafness. It is a relatively common problem for those that are suffering from sensorineural hearing loss. This is by far the most common kind of hearing loss for those who cannot hear. A specific test is designed for this purpose and can help people who might need hearing aids.