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Workers Compensation in Australia

by Melanie Peterson

Injuries that arise in the workplace or in the course of employment regardless of who was at fault entitle you to workers compensation. All workplaces in Australia should be covered with Workers Compensation Insurance to protect their employees in an event of an injury in the course of employment If you experience such injury, you have every right to claim workers compensation either on your own or with a professional representation of a workers compensation lawyer.

What is Workers Compensation?

Workers compensation relates to work-related or workplace injuries that might cause sufferings for the workers economically, physically, or mentally. Injuries due to falls, moving objects, insufficient work safety, injuries as a result of overworking and stress injuries are some examples that are usually claimed through workers compensation insurance. Keep in mind that those injuries mentioned are just a small part and there are many other forms of injuries that you may be able to claim compensation. After an injury occurs in your workplace, you should seek immediate help to get you better and to be compensated.  Some injuries even if minor might evolve to major injuries, therefore, further decrease your capacity to work and get better.

What Can I Claim?

You are eligible to claim compensation for your past and future income loss, for your medical treatment expenses and rehabilitation costs, education, and training assistance, if you can work again in another occupation. You are also entitled to claim domestic care support, and assistance. If your situation was assessed as having a permanent impairment, lump sum payment can be claimed.

Most Common Work-related Injuries

By ABS’s 2017-18 work year’s numbers, the most common work-related injuries are injuries occur from pushing, lifting, bending, and pulling with 24.2% of all work-related injuries happened in 2017-2018. It is followed by being hit or cut by an object or a vehicle with 18.2 %. And the 3rd of the most common work-related injuries are slips and falls with 15.5% of all injuries.

Those statistics indicate that, for many years, these injuries have been taking place more frequently than we could have guessed. Regarding the statistics, thankfully, injuries that lead to permanent disabilities aren’t as common as others but if you experience an injury, it is recommended you lodge a worker’s compensation claim to ensure you keep your rights protected both for you and your family.

Who Can Claim Workers Compensation?

Regardless if you are a casual worker, part time worker, full time worker, permanent employee or self-employed, you are eligible to make a workers compensation claim. It is not necessary to get injured in the workplace if your injury was a result of your work (such as dust disease) you can lodge a claim.

Do I Need A Lawyer to Claim Workers Compensation?

It is not compulsory to hire a lawyer to claim compensation, but a compensation lawyer with experience in similar cases will assist you greatly. An experienced lawyer can manage the situation with the insurer on your behalf and prevent you to suffer further court expenses. Managing a compensation process might be overwhelming if you are already injured. Having legal representation to look after your claim can be very advantageous. If you hesitate to work with a lawyer because of the economic difficulties, please understand that most workers compensation lawyers are paid by the Workcover Independent Review Office (WIRO) which means you do not pay them anything out of pocket and they do not deduct their fees from your workers compensation claim. Please ensure your lawyer confirms that in writing to you.

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