John was an office worker who had been typing at his computer for hours. He developed a repetitive strain injury in his wrist and was unable to continue working. His friend Greg recommended he speak to a Revolution Lawyer to discuss…. He was able to claim WorkCover Insurance, which enables him to receive medical care and financial support while he recovered.
Sally was a factory worker who was injured in an industrial accident due to unsafe practices. She was burned on her arm by a hot machine and had to be hospitalised for treatment. Her WorkCover Insurance enables her to get the medical care she needed and to receive financial support while she was unable to work. Sally also received a lump sum compensation payout at the finalisation of her common law WorkCover compensation claim.
Mark was a construction worker who fell from a broken ladder while working on a building. He broke his leg and was unable to continue working. He was able to claim WorkCover Insurance, which enables him to get medical care and financial support while he recovered. Mark also received a lump sum compensation payout for his common law WorkCover compensation claim.
*These stories have been created as an example.
WorkCover Claims a Two-Stage Approach.
Stage One: Statutory Claim
A worker can claim WorkCover benefits if injured at work. This stage of the claim is part of a no-fault scheme which means it does not matter if the worker caused their own injury. WorkCover benefits include lost wages, medical and rehabilitation costs and travel costs that are treatment and claim related. WorkCover may arrange for the worker to have a permanent impairment assessment by an independent medical provider to determine what’s referred to as a ‘Total Percentage of Impairment.’ Once the worker has been assessed, they will receive a Notice of Assessment and potentially a lump sum offer payout.
The maximum statutory compensation payout possible is $361,273.00. The lump sum offer is calculated using the worker’s ‘Total Percentage of Impairment.’ If the worker obtained a 1% impairment, they would receive 1 % of $361,273.00 which would be a total lump sum offer of $3612.00.
A worker with a 5% injury would receive a lump sum compensation offer of $18 063.00, and a 15% injury would see a lump sum offer of $ 54,190.00.
If a worker accepts the lump sum offer, they cannot pursue a common law claim for compensation unless their assessed degree of impairment is 20% or more. Obtaining an impairment assessment of 20% or more is a significant injury and not typical for most claims.
It is imperative to seek legal advice before accepting the lump sum offer. At Revolution Law our Lawyers provide a free legal consultation to help you determine whether the WorkCover initial offer should be accepted or rejected.
Stage Two: Common Law Claim
Workers can pursue a common law claim with WorkCover if they are not at fault for their accident. In Sally’s case, there were no safety procedures that she had been advised to follow, making the employer responsible for her injury. Likewise, with James, the broken ladder provided by his employer was not suitable equipment and as such his employer was responsible for the injury that James suffered.
While a statutory claim has a maximum payout of $387,240, a common law claim has no limit for payout. The common law claim works by assessing evidence of each of the heads of damages, including pain and suffering, loss of earnings both past and future, medical expenses, care and assistance, and aids and equipment.
Common law claims are specific to the individual circumstances and injuries of the worker and the supporting evidence. If successful, it is typical for the payout of a common law claim to exceed the statutory claim offer.
Our Lawyers are experienced across an array of WorkCover claims. Take advantage of a free consultation with an experienced WorkCover claim lawyer to determine if a common law claim is right for you. We have exceptional experience in the field of Accident Claims, so you can breathe easy knowing you’re making the right steps to getting your life and career back on track.
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