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How to navigate a work cover claim in Queensland
Queensland Workers Rights
If you find the WorkCover Queensland system unfamiliar and a little intimidating, we’ll help you understand it, guide you through it, and ensure you receive the justice and the compensation in which you are entitled.
The law is here to guard your rights, and we are here to help you understand and pursue them.
If you have been injured at work, while travelling to and from work, or you are a Queensland worker injured while working interstate, you may be entitled to compensation for:
– Medical, physical rehabilitation and other direct expenses
– Loss of earnings
– Lump sum compensation for injuries you have suffered.
However, to obtain any form of compensation, you must know your rights.
What is a Workplace Injury, and Who Can Claim?
Workplace injuries can range from catastrophic damage to strains and sprains, including
repetitive strain injury (RSI).
If you’ve been injured at work, and its due to the negligence of an employer, or co-worker, you may be able to obtain workers’ compensation benefits and damages to which you are legally entitled.
Are you confused by what specialists do to next with your WorkCover claim, or confused what your rights are? Our Workers Rights Lawyers can go through what they advise you do next, and review where you are at currently. It costs nothing to have a chat.
Are you currently dealing with WorkCover Queensland on a ‘Statutory Claim’ ?
Under a statutory claim, you can apply for workers’ compensation benefits, regardless of who or what caused the work-related injury. Benefits under this ‘no fault’ system may include hospital and medical expenses, lost wages, travelling expenses, rehabilitation treatment of a lump sum compensation payment for permanent impairment.
At some stage WorkCover may offer you a lump sum offer, and at this stage it’s important to seek INDEPENDENT LEGAL ADVICE before accepting WorkCover’s offer.
Lodging a statutory claim is complicated, and claims agents who often undergo limited training may neglect to inform you of your entitlement to lump sum compensation and your right to appeal an offer. Misinformation and mistakes in the claims process could mean that you lose thousands of dollars in potential damages.
Common mistakes include:
- Failing to report the injury in a timely manner.
- Poor record keeping.
- Non-compliance to medical advice.
- Inconsistency in the specifics of the accident and injury.
- Failing to seek professional legal advice.
A failure to seek legal advice is one of the most common mistakes people make when making a WorkCover claim. The reality is that many people are lulled into a false sense of security by insurance companies who seem eager to ‘help’. However, the complexity of the system and limited knowledge, means that agents will often neglect to tell you of your rights and full entitlements to compensation or damages.
During the statutory claims process, you may receive Notice of Assessment. This document provides valuable information such as the Statutory Lump Sum Offer and your Degree of Impairment (DOI) value (%). The percentage of impairment is an indicator of the seriousness of the injuries sustained and has a direct impact on your ability to lodge a common law claim for damages. Your decision to accept the Statutory Lump Sum Offer is irrevocable and you may not be able to lodge a common law claim thereafter.
For this reason, it is absolutely essential that you do not respond or accept the statutory
offer without first obtaining expert legal advice.
Common Law Claims
Most claimants start with a statutory claim, and move on to a common law claim, if their employer is at fault.
Common Law claims must be lodged within three years from the date of the injury, and damages can include payments for past and future loss of income, treatment and other expenses, and pain and suffering.
Your employer is insured for the cost of these claims by WorkCover Queensland, or some large employers have their own self insurers.
If negligence by other parties has contributed to your injuries, as in the case of an accident caused by faulty equipment supplied by a third party, they may be required to contribute to your damages claim.
However, if you contributed to your own injuries, for example by not following safety instructions, the amount of damages may be reduced.
Legal advice is highly recommended before lodging a Common Law Claim in Queensland. If you would like help in doing this, please fill out the form.
Often you will hear this from your claims manager at WorkCover, once you receive your Notice of Assessment. It’s important you do this, as your acceptance of WorkCover’s first/lump sum offer may preclude you from any future claim (including a Common Law Claim).