What do I do if I am injured at work – QLD?
You’ve probably heard stories about people being injured at work before or perhaps you are reading this article having been injured at work. However, most of the stories don’t really tell you what you should actually do once you have been injured. Its not exactly a common occurence!
Immediately following an injury at work, you or your family might have many concerns such as:
- Have I taken the right steps or lost any rights following my injury at work?
- How will I afford to live and pay my bills if I stop work because of an injury at work?
- Am I entitled to my salary or normal pay cheque even if I can’t work because I was injured at work?
- If I am injured at work, should I be on sick leave? What if I have exhausted my sick leave?
- What steps do I need to take to protect my rights if I am injured while at work in Queensland?
If you are injured at work in Queensland, you should be able to access worker’s compensation through the state insurance scheme for employees operated by WorkCover. Workers’ compensation is a type of insurance that can pay the wages and medical costs of employees who have been injured due to their employment.
WorkCover Queensland is the exclusive provider of accident insurance for work-related injuries in Queensland, with the exception of self-insurers. WorkCover Queensland will work with you, your employer and medical practitioners to help you recover from an injury.
If you have been injured at work or because of work, you should:
- see your doctor and get a workers’ compensation medical certificate
- tell your employer about your injury and give them with a copy of your medical certificate
- consult a lawyer to assist you in preparing a compensation claim
- lodge your claim with WorkCover Queensland
- keep copies of all documents relating to your injury and claim.
There are 2 types of claims:
- statutory (no-fault) claims
- common law claims (where the employee seeks common law action through the courts against their employer).
All claims made in Queensland first need to be lodged as a statutory (no-fault) claim.
Find out about the claim process, and what to expect.
If you’re unhappy with the decision made in relation to your claim, you can appeal the decision through the Workers’ Compensation Regulator or by phoning 1300 739 021. You can also engage a solicitor to help you appeal the decision.
For statutory claims, compensation is paid regardless of who was at fault for causing the injury.
Payments and benefits (known as statutory compensation) received for these claims may include:
- weekly payments as income replacement
- lump sums to compensate for permanent impairment
- hospital and medical expenses.
Common law claims
Common law claims involve an injured worker suing their employer for negligence.
Generally, a common law claim can only proceed after a statutory claim has been lodged, and then accepted by WorkCover Queensland or the relevant self-insurer. A common law claim may only proceed when WorkCover Queensland or the self-insurer issues a notice of assessment of injury.
The courts may award payments (known as common law damages) for:
- economic loss
- pain and suffering
- legal costs
- medical and hospital costs.
You may contact our office for furhter information and advice. We provide no win, no fee services for personal injury compensation matters so feel welcome to call and ask if this arrangement can extend to your circumstances. It costs nothing to ask!
For general questions, you can also contact Contact WorkCover Queensland on 1300 362 128 (Monday to Friday, 8am–5.30pm).
Read more information on workers’ compensation, including:
Getting back to work—sometimes doing lighter duties can reduce your financial and emotional stress, and plays a vital role in your injury rehabilitation.
- Workers compensation laws—lists relevant workers’ compensation acts and regulations for Queensland.
- Comcare—the federal workplace safety, rehabilitation and compensation statutory authority.
- WorkCover guides and fact sheets—information for employees (workers), employers and providers.
- Heads of Workers’ Compensation Authorities—a group of representatives from the peak bodies responsible for the regulation of workers compensation in Australia.
- Workers’ Compensation Regulator (Office of Industrial Relations)—conducts reviews of insurance decisions and provides scheme-wide statistics and information about legislation and amendments.
- Safe Work Australia—the Australian Government’s statutory authority aims to improve workers’ compensation arrangements across Australia.
Last updated: 10/11/2022
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