WorkCover injury threshold reversed
In October 2013 the Newman Government legislated radical changes to the workers compensation scheme in Qld. Most notably, the Workers Compensation and Rehabilitation and Other Legislation Amendment Act 2013 introduced an injury threshold which restricted the right of a worker to sue their employer for compensation unless their primary injury had been assessed to have a permanent impairment of 6% or above.
One of a raft of industrial reforms introduced by the Palaszczuk Government aims to abolish this injury threshold. In July 2015 the Government introduced the Workers Compensation and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2015. If passed, workers injured after 31 January 2015 will be entitled to seek damages from their employer, irrespective of the extent of their injury (i.e. there will no longer be an injury threshold). A worker will still need to have received a notice of assessment for at least one of their injuries prior to commencing a claim against their employer (unless they have a terminal condition).
Workers injured under the previous scheme (October 2013 to January 2013) assessed with a permanent impairment of 5% or less will be entitled to an additional lump sum compensation payment from WorkCover.
It is expected that the Bill will be passed in early 2016 once the procedure for paying additional lump sum compensation to workers injured under the previous regime has been decided.
The Bill also proposes to reverse other amendments to the workers compensation scheme made by the Newman Government including the ability of prospective employers to review a prospective employee’s claims history.
If you have been injured at work, Miller Sockhill Lawyers on the Sunshine Coast can advise you of your rights and act on your behalf throughout all stages of a workers compensation claim.