Don't Get Stitched Up By WorkCover
Injured Workers and WorkCover
Claiming compensation for a workplace injury is not always a straight forward experience. There are certain obligations a worker needs to do when they are injured, and failure to do so may jeopardise the claim. Below are some hints to simplify the claim process.
WorkCover law is extensive and complex, and the Union has the resources through the OH&S Unit to deal with Members claims. It is better to use the resources earlier, rather than later. If uncertain how to deal with your injury or WorkCover claim, contact the Union straight away.
Important hints should you become injured at work:
- Regardless of the extent of the injury; always lodge the injury in the “Injury Report Book”(EVERY WORKPLACE MUST HAVE ONE); on site at the time of injury, or when practical to do so, ( you can get a workmate to do this for you if you do not return to the site where the injury occurred); notify your supervisor/employer and work mates of the injury; and keep a copy in a safe place. Not all injuries need immediate medical attention, and if a claim is made on the employer at a later date, or when the injured worker has left the employment of the employer, evidence of this notification is important.
- Always tell your doctor the injury/illness or reason for the visit is work related.
- It is your right to be treated by the doctor of your choice.
- Should payment for lost time or medical costs (this includes the cost of the visit to the doctor) be necessary, give a WorkCover claim form (available from any Post Office) and “Certificate of Capacity” that you may have received from your doctor to your employer, always send the duplicate to the employers WorkCover Agent, and keep your own copy in a safe place with all original documents.
- If mailing documents, always use registered mail as prove of serving the document.
- After you have given the claim form to your employer, the claim will be handled by an Insurance Agent, not your employer. Be cautious when speaking to an Insurance Agent Investigator, or signing any statements. Only refer to the injury and the workplace incident. There is no legal requirement to speak to an investigator, and refusing to do so will not have an effect on your claim. Contact the Union if you are unsure about meeting with an Insurance Agent Investigator; their purpose may be to have your claim rejected.
- Your employer has 10 days to notify their Agent, and the Agent has 28 days to notify the injured worker in writing if the claim has been accepted or rejected. If your claim is not accepted, contact the Union.
- After you have received a letter of acceptance from the insurance agent, and payment has not been made after the second pay cycle after the acceptance date, you must contact the Union office.