WorkCover myths exposed

16/04/2019

We’re here to help. With decades of experience in workers’ compensation law, our team of expert legal professionals have helped thousands of individuals to lodge and dispute their WorkCover claims. Here we have compiled some information which may help to dispel and expose some common WorkCover myths, and help you to better understand your rights and entitlements under WorkCover law.

Myth #1 – “It’s just a minor injury, I don’t need to report it.”

Regardless of how minor you believe your injury to be, if you have been injured at work then the first thing you need to do is report your injury. It is always best to this in writing such as an email and by following your employer’s incident report process. Please keep a copy of what you submit for your records.

By reporting your injury immediately, you ensure that there is a record of what happened and, when it happened. You can easily refer back to this record if you need to, such as if your injury becomes a bigger problem then you initially believed.

Myth #2 – “WorkCover claims are only made by frauds.”

WorkCover is a government body designed to assist employers to reduce health and safety risks in the workplace as well as managing the WorkCover system for the state government.

It exists to assist everyone in maintaining a safe work environment and provide coverage for compensation for workers including medical expenses, rehabilitation costs and/or lost wages as a result of a workplace incident.

WorkCover claims should be taken very seriously and if you believe that your claim has been unjustly managed by your employer’s WorkCover insurer, then there are several ways to lodge a dispute within the allotted 60 day term you are given to do so. Our team of legal professionals have extensive experience managing WorkCover disputes. Contact us for support and further information on 1800 21 22 23.

Myth #3 – “I will lose my job if I can’t work due to an injury.”

Your employer is required by law to provide modified tasks and duties for up to 52 weeks which fit with medical advice received after your treatment for a workplace injury once your WorkCover claim has been accepted. This term is designed to allow you time to recover from your injury with help and management from your doctor or treating medical professional.

Should you not be able to work due to an injury you have sustained, then you are eligible to claim for weekly payments through WorkCover in place of your regular income. You are required to provide a workers’ compensation Certificate of Capacity from your treatment provider every 28 days to continue receiving these weekly payments.

Myth #4 – “I can’t choose my own treatment options if I lodge a claim with WorkCover.”

If you claiming WorkCover benefits, you are free to select your own treatment provider/s. You should, however, make sure that the treatment which you are receiving falls under the treatment approved for reimbursement or coverage by your employer’s WorkCover insurer so that you are not subject to out of pocket expenses. Your treatment provider/s should request permission first from your employer’s insurer. 

Myth #5 – “I can’t lodge a WorkCover claim directly. Only my employer can.”

You are required to report your injury or incident to your employer as soon as possible.  There are, in fact, two different ways in which you can lodge a claim with WorkCover. The first is through your employer by giving your claim form for workers’ compensation to your HR Manager or employer at work.  Make sure they give you a copy of the form.  You may also file it directly with your employer’s workers compensation insurer online.

WorkCover claim forms can be obtained from Australia Post Offices, your Doctor or from our office.  Should you choose to obtain your own WorkCover claim form and lodge it via post, then it is always best to send it via registered post and keep all of your postal records together for quick reference later down the track.

Ensure that your treatment provider is aware that you are intending to lodge a WorkCover claim so they are able to provide you with a Workers’ Compensation Certificate of Capacity following your consultation.

Myth #6 – “I can’t seek legal advice about my WorkCover claim unless it’s been rejected.”

You are permitted to seek legal advice at any time and for any reason related to your WorkCover claim. Workplace injuries and incidents can be very stressful to manage and you are not expected to understand detailed legal information about the process or what you are entitled to claim for. That’s why we’re here to help.

If at any stage in your WorkCover claim process you believe that you would benefit from legal advice, please contact us immediately on 1800 21 22 23 or seek further information from our website www.gordonlegal.com.au.