Injured at work? What are your entitlements?17-02-2023 | Video | Steve Groves
If you are a worker, and you are unfortunately injured at work, your benefits are prescribed by provisions in the Workers' Compensation Act 1987.
The first thing to realise is that there is a very wide definition of "worker" in the Act. Many people who are self-employed, but who are working Directors of small companies are still covered as workers. Many sub-contractors, or people who might consider themselves independent contractors, can still be covered as workers or deemed workers by the provisions of the Act.
Workers' Compensation Insurance is compulsory. Every employer in New South Wales must cover its employees for Workers' Compensation benefits. If an employer has neglected to obtain Workers' Compensation Insurance there is an Uninsured Liability Scheme which covers workers of uninsured employers.
The other important aspect of Workers' Compensation Law is that legal representation for injured workers is FREE.
The Government established an organisation called the Independent Review Office (IRO). IRO funds solicitors who are accredited by IRO to provide specialist legal advice to injured workers.
My name is Steve Groves and solicitors such as myself, and the other solicitors at Lamrocks who specialise in Compensation Law, are accredited by IRO to provide advice and assistance to injured workers and are paid by IRO.
If you have been injured at work your statutory benefits include:-
- Weekly Compensation while incapacitated, or partly incapacitated, for work
- Treatment expenses, including domestic assistance.
- Lump sum compensation for permanent impairments.
- The dependents and families of workers killed at work are covered for substantial benefits.
For anyone injured at work the first thing to do is lodge a Claim with the employer or it’s Workers' Compensation Insurer. The employer has to provide a copy of the Claim Form and details of the Workers' Compensation Insurer.
The Claim must be submitted with a Certificate of Capacity from your treating doctor.
Any medical practitioner consulted by an injured worker would have the appropriate Certificate or be able to obtain access to the Certificate.
Once the Claim Form and Certificate is submitted to the employer, or its insurer, the insurer will raise a Claim Number and start to manage the claim.
If any dispute arises regarding the payment of statutory benefits, the insurer has to provide the injured worker with a Notice which is prescribed by the Act. This Notice is referred to as a Section 78 Notice. It has to provide the worker with the reason that the Insurer has declined liability for any statutory benefit and provide the evidence on which the decision has been based.
Anyone who receives a Section 78 Notice should immediately contact a solicitor who is accredited by IRO. A list of accredited solicitors, and their location is on the IRO website – www.iro.nsw.gov.au. Details can also be obtained by calling IRO (139 476).
Any injured worker who is likely to suffer long term incapacity, or permanent impairments, should consult a solicitor who is a specialist in Workers' Compensation Law and obtain some preliminary advice regarding all of the benefits that are available pursuant to the Workers' Compensation Act 1987. Advice regarding Workers' Compensation benefits, provided by an IRO accredited solicitor, is FREE to that injured worker.
At Lamrocks, we have solicitors accredited by IRO who are also Law Society Accredited Specialists in Personal Injury Law.
If you have had a work injury, and need advice, contact Lamrocks on ph: 02 4731 5688 for FREE advice.