Worker’s Compensation

Have you had a Workplace Injury?

If you have been injured at work you may be entitled to claim workers compensation. A worker is entitled to compensation for a workplace injury suffered during the course of employment under the provisions of the Workers Compensation & Injury Management Act.

What does my workers compensation insurance entitle me to?

  • Weekly payments of compensation for any periods of incapacity for work, either total or partial.
  • Reasonable medical, hospital pharmaceutical and other treatment expenses.
  • Vocational rehabilitation if he or she requires assistance to return to work.
  • Should the work injury result in a permanent impairment of a body part or function then there will be an entitlement to elect to receive a modest lump sum payment pursuant to the Second Schedule of the Act.

The amounts payable under the Act are limited to maximum prescribed amounts which increase on 1 July of each year. The prescribed amount for the current and past years can be found on WorkCover’s website by clicking here. The current prescribed amounts can be found at WorkCover’s website by clicking here.

It is possible to “redeem” all of your entitlements to workers compensation by a once and for all lump sum payment. A redemption can only be achieved if agreement can be reached as to the lump sum amount you should be paid. Most claims are finished by a lump sum payment.

You may be able to claim damages over and above your workers’ compensation entitlements if your injuries were caused by your employer’s breach of duty of care or by the negligence of a fellow worker.

You will only be able to maintain a claim for common law damages if your injury results in a whole person permanent impairment of not less than 15%.

Workers Compensation Lawyer

What if my Workplace Injury is Permanent?

If your injury results in a permanent impairment assessed as being between 15% and 25% then you will be entitled to elect to pursue a restricted claim for common law damages. If you elect to pursue a restricted claim for common law damages then your entitlement to receive workers’ compensation will end. The maximum amount of damages you are entitled to claim in this class is calculated as follows:

  • The maximum amount that can be awarded is called “Amount A” which is currently $400,475.
  • The amount of damages to be awarded is to be a proportion, determined according to the severity of the injury, of the maximum amount.
  • There shall be deducted from that amount the total amount of workers’ compensation paid at that date.

If your injury results in a permanent impairment assessed at 25% or more then you will be entitled to elect to pursue common law damages without affecting your entitlement to workers’ compensation payments. If you fall within this category, the amount of damages you will be entitled to claim shall be unrestricted.

There are strict time limits that apply to common law workers compensation claims. In particular, steps must be taken before the “termination date” to protect your ability to pursue a common law claim. The termination date is usually 12 months from the date of your claim for workers’ compensation.

If you were injured whilst working for a host employer in a labour supply arrangement, then you may have a public liability claim against the host employer if your host employer breached its duty of care. Your claim will be in the nature of a public liability claim which you will be able to claim independently of your workers’ compensation entitlements. To find out about your entitlements, please go to the public liability section by clicking here.

The workers’ compensation system is very complicated and there are many pitfalls that need to be avoided. There are also strict limitation periods that apply to your ability to pursue common law damages. It is very important that you seek legal advice as quickly as possible after suffering an injury at work to ensure that your claim is protected