What You Need to Know about Defending Your Rights in a Workers’ Compensation Claim

If you are injured as a result of your work, you may be eligible for compensation. This includes physical and psychological injuries or illnesses sustained at work, as well as any medical costs, ongoing treatment, rehabilitation, disability compensation, loss of income or other damage related to the injury.

Laws in Queensland exist to ensure workers are appropriately compensated if they are injured at work. There are two main pathways when making a workplace injury claim – worker’s compensation and common law claims. Below, we’ll be looking at workers’ compensation and the importance of engaging a compensation lawyer to manage the process.
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“Host Employment” Compensation When Working Through a Labour Hire Company

Labour hire companies are emerging as a dominant force in the Australian labour market, with many businesses displacing their directly employed and permanent staff with hire-in personnel.

Businesses benefit from the reduced risk and responsibility to offer continued work for employees. However, many labour hire workers are left wondering what their rights are, particularly if they sustain a work-related injury. The good news is that labour hire workers still have rights in these circumstances and are just as entitled to compensation as other workers.

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Seek Legal Help before Making a Claim against an Employer

Despite everyone’s best efforts, workplace disputes and conflicts between employees and employers can be impossible to avoid. Aside from causing a lot of stress, disputes can have serious legal and financial consequences for both parties.

Disputes can arise from a number of situations, including conflicts over terms and conditions of employment, workers’ compensation, unfair dismissal, discrimination and harassment. If you are an employee thinking about taking action against your employer over a workplace dispute, it is crucial that you get legal advice.

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Why Workers’ Compensation Can Be So Difficult For Claimants

Workplaces are required by law to be insured for workers’ compensation so they are financially protected if employees sustain an injury related to their job. These compensation claims operate on a no fault basis, with the insurer (usually WorkCover Queensland) paying medical costs and wages regardless of what caused the injury.

It sounds so straightforward, yet injured workers often experience significant difficulties when making work-related injury claims. These difficulties can arise from their dealings with insurers or from pursuing the more complex common law claims for damages.

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What to do if you are not satisfied with WorkCover

If you have been injured due to your working conditions, WorkCover is required to offset all payments for treatment. Occasionally, this is not the case and Australian employees are left out of pocket. If you are unhappy with the financial support you have received, we’ve put together this guide to the process of appealing a workers’ compensation decision.

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Don’t Put Up with Abuse Anymore

For too many years, employees have been coping with workplace abuse without speaking up for their rights. This silent predisposition has been changing in recent years as we begin to understand the types of abuse and the level of harm that can result. Today, we’re highlighting forms of abuse and the options available to you as an Australian employee.

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Injured at Work? Know Your Rights

Workplace injuries are exceedingly common as Australian workers put themselves in dangerous situations on behalf of their employer. Be it company negligence, accidental injury or defective equipment, it’s important to know your rights. In this article, we will be explaining the processes involved with workers’ compensation in Queensland and wider Australia.

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A Guide to Claiming Workplace Injuries

What Kind of Injuries Can I Apply for?

Workplace injuries can range from serious illness, injury or damage (including amputations, fractures and brain injuries) through to less severe injuries such as strains and sprains (e.g. repetitive strain injury).

Examples of injuries include:

  • Injuries suffered at work, as a result of work or during work activities
  • Diseases caused by work
  • Diseases or pre-existing conditions made worse by work
  • Injuries suffered while travelling for work
  • Injuries suffered while receiving medical treatment for a separate work injury

A work injury doesn’t have to be purely physical. Mental injuries such as those driven by stress, or leading to events such as a heart attack or worsening of a pre-existing condition can also be eligible for workplace injury compensation.

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Australia’s Biggest Compensation Payouts

 

While not all workplace compensation cases are front page news, certain shocking injuries have seen compensation payouts soaring into the millions.

While they may seem excessive, these payments are often awarded to compensate for horrific injuries which will last the rest of one’s natural life.

Here are some of Australia’s biggest compensation payouts.

 

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What Happens if I Get Injured Working from Home?

 

When it comes to workplace injury law, we often think about risks and hazards that could occur in the workplace itself. However, the rise of flexible work arrangements, virtual networks, video conferencing and more, has blurred the distinction between the workplace and personal spaces.

As technology increasingly enables us to work from anywhere, telecommuting – or working from home – has been on the rise. Both employees and employers benefit from the added flexibility and productivity benefits. Deloitte went as far as calling teleworking “one of the biggest structural changes to the labour market this decade”.

Even when working from home, employees may be entitled to workers’ compensation. A multi-million dollar compensation pay-out to a Telstra employee who slipped and fell while working from home has highlighted that workplace health and safety law is by no means limited to the workplace and should be taken very seriously by employers.

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Workers’ Compensation When Injured Abroad

 

In an increasingly global professional environment, working abroad is becoming more and more common. Many companies have a presence is multiple countries and most large businesses deal with international clients and partners.

When travelling abroad for work, whether to another state or another country, you can still be eligible for Australian workers’ compensation.

 

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Is My Injury Work Related?

 

For an injury to count as a workplace injury, it must be connected to your work – but does not always have to occur in the actual workspace.

As outlined in the Workers’ Compensation and Rehabilitation Act 2003, an injury is any personal injury arising in the course of, employment, so long as the employment is the major significant contributing factor to the injury.

In plain terms, this means that if your work is the major cause behind developing a psychiatric or psychological disorder, it can fall under workplace injury.

For more information on general workplace injuries, including some frequently asked questions, visit our Work Related Injury page.

 

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Quitting Due to Stress – When is Stress Claimable?

When people think of workplace injury, they usually imagine physical wounds, such as accidentally cutting your hand off in a factory.

But the truth is, it’s not just physical – workplace stress has become recognised globally as a major challenge to workers’ health and the health of an organisation. In fact, stress is now the second most common cause of workplace compensation claims in Australia.

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Will Work Cover My Medical Bills if I Injure Myself?

 

Normally, workers’ compensation claims are made because of accidents or hazards in the workplace that have happened despite the employee’s best care. But what happens when your injury is actually your fault?

In Queensland, you may be able to claim compensation even if you caused the accident that led to your injury. Today we’re going to explain “no fault” compensation and further explore this topic.

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WORKCOVER NOTICE OF ASSESSMENT AND LUMP SUM OFFERS

If you have been injured at work and are receiving workers’ compensation benefits, eventually WorkCover or the self-insurer will stop paying those benefits and close your claim.

Up until this point, your wages and treatment have been covered by the ‘no fault’ statutory scheme.  Once your injury becomes ‘stable and stationary’– which means that your injuries are unlikely to get any better or worse – your claim is closed and you are entitled to seek a Notice of Assessment from WorkCover or the self-insurer.

In order to obtain a Notice of Assessment, WorkCover or the self-insurer will arrange an appointment for you to attend on a doctor of their choice.  The purpose of this appointment is for the doctor to assess whether you have sustained a permanent impairment as a result of the workplace accident.  If you have sustained psychological injuries you may also be required to attend the Medical Assessment Tribunal, where a panel of three doctors will interview you and assess your injuries.

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