Your Rights to Making a Work Injury Claim
If you suffer an injury, illness or disease as a result of or in the course of employment then you will be able to make a workers’ compensation claim.
Both State (Return to Work SA from Jul 1 2015) and Federal (Comcare) Schemes cover injured workers irrespective of whether they are permanent, casual, full-time or part-time employees. If you consider yourself to be self-employed or a contractor you may also be covered.
So if you have had an accident at work, sustained a psychological injury from your workplace environment, been involved in a motor vehicle accident travelling to or from work, or during working hours you can be sure that you will receive the right advice at Nick Xenophon & Co. Lawyers. If you are not sure what your rights are then it is strongly recommended that you contact our office. Your first consultation is free. Click here for more information.
The Workers Compensation Claims Process
If you have suffered an injury at work, the first thing to do is Report the Incident to your employer and follow company procedures.
Then, you must seek immediate Medical Attention at which time you should ask the Doctor for a Workers Compensation Medical Certificate. You will need this before you can lodge your ‘Application for Compensation’ with Return to Work SA if your employer is on a state scheme and Comcare for federal schemes..
The next important step is to Seek Legal Advice from Nick Xenophon and Co Lawyers to discuss your Workers Compensation Claim, particularly if the injury you have suffered is permanent and / or your injury is a result of negligence.
Do Time Limits Apply to Making a Claim?
Yes. Time limits do apply for lodging a claim for workers compensation or common law damages.
Ideally it is best to make a claim as soon as possible, however:
- A claim for workers compensation needs to be lodged within six months of the disability arising or being diagnosed. In some cases you may be able to lodge a claim after this period. It is important that you contact Nick Xenophon & Co. Lawyers as soon as possible to ensure you receive your full rights and entitlements.
- A claim for common law damages needs to be lodged within three years of the event that caused your injuries, unless the Court orders an extension of time to commence an action. If you are under the age of 18 years at the time of the accident, a parent or guardian may instruct a solicitor to start proceedings on your behalf and in those circumstances, the three year time limit does not start until you turn 18 years old.
Workers Compensation Entitlements
The Return to Work SA Scheme will replace the WorkCover SA Scheme from July 1 2015.
While the previous WorkCover SA scheme will still apply for all victims injured prior to 1st July 2015, there will be transitional arrangements which may affect future entitlements for previously injured workers. Please contact Nick Xenophon & Co. Lawyers to find out how your entitlements will be affected.
The new Return to Work SA scheme will further change the compensation and entitlements for work injury victims. It will provide personalised and evidence-based treatment, care and support to people who have been injured at work, for limited time periods including:
- income support to cover your loss of wages for up to two years.
- reasonable medical treatment and care for up to three years.
- return to work services like job placement and retraining for up to three years.
What if I have a Serious Injury?
From 1 July 2015, seriously injured workers will be defined as having a work injury that has resulted in a permanent impairment and the degree of impairment has been assessed as 30% or more.
If you sustain a serious injury at work you will provided with:
- income support until retirement age
- 100% notional weekly earnings in the first year
- 80% notional weekly earnings for subsequent years
- lifetime treatment, care and support services.
Will I also be entitled to a Lump Sum Payment?
From July 1 2015, if you are assessed with a whole impairment of:
- 5% to 29% You will be entitled to lump sum payments for both future economic and non-economic loss These payments will be in addition to the income and other support services mentioned earlier.
- 30% and above You will have the option of:
- applying for redemption of weekly payments by agreement with ReturnToWorkSA, or
- bringing a common law claim for damages for economic loss, where your employer’s negligence caused or contributed to your injury. If successful, you will obviously no longer have access to weekly payments, however you will continue to receive lifetime treatment, care and support for your injury.
Nick Xenophon & Co. Lawyers will help you through this often confusing and complicated workers compensation legal system, so that you can focus on your health and rehabilitation without the added stress. Your first consultation with one of our expert work injury lawyers is absolutely FREE and we can also discuss the option of a NO WIN-NO FEE arrangement.
Call us now to talk about your work injury matter on a no obligation basis. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain.
If you would like more information about how long your work injury case will take please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us either by submitting an online enquiry or by calling us direct on 08 8336 8888.