Work Compensation Benefits and Avoiding the Pitfalls

Having an accident at work can conjure up a cocktail of emotions. As well as the stress and pain there is also the bureaucracy and the work compensation procedures to deal with.   Work compensation (or workers comp) for work accidents offer benefits to workers who have suffered an injury. These benefits are awarded by the work compensation insurer i.e. work cover. Benefits may include:

  • Loss of earnings
  • Hospital and / or medical expenses
  • Rehabilitation expenses
  • Nursing expenses
  • Travel expenses
  • Funeral expenses
  • Lump sum payment

Unfortunately, work compensation claims not be; ‘plain sailing’. Once your injury has settled work cover (or other insurer) may want to get you off their books. This effectively ends your workers comp claim. They may do this by offering a lump sum payment.

The lump sum payment offered considers current losses and expenses to date. It will not take into consideration any future losses or expenses. At this point it is very important to get independent advice from an organisation such as the Australian Injury Helpline.

Depending on your workplace injuries, you may have other compensation entitlements. If work accidents are caused by someone elses ‘negligence’ whether fully or partially, you may be entitled to a common law claim. A common law claim is separate workers comp claim only available outside of ‘work compensation’.

In one Australian State in order to move onto a common law claim, you must refuse the lump sum payment. Once accepted you will lose your right to a common law work compensation claim. In another Australian State you can move onto common law following acceptance of a lump sum payment. It is very important to get advice before accepting or rejecting a lump sum payments so your entitlements are unaffected.

Workplace injuries which cause a permanent physical impairment, is assessed by a work cover medical professional. Your injury is measured and a percentage of impairment is given by the work cover doctor.  This level of impairment is only their opinion and another doctor may offer a different assessment.

You have a right to get a second medical opinion. Never accept any offer of compensation until you have contacted an independent work compensation organisation.

You can find out all your rights and options by contacting a workers comp helpline who offer services including:

  • Free workers comp information and forms
  • Work cover information
  • A free case review
  • Free legal advice
  • Referral service to a specialist work injury lawyer

You may or may not have common law entitlements but if you do you need to follow protocol. To find out what that protocol is, seek independent advice before you agree to, or accept any offer of work compensation. Contact a free helpline such as the Australian Injury Helpline who can assist.

Common law claims thousands of dollars awarded

Common law or negligence claimsCommon law claims advice Australian Injury Helpline

Negligence occurs when an accident or injury, could have been prevented. It can be difficult to prove negligence and it certainly isn’t as black and white as you would think.

Many victims even think that they were to blame for the accident because they were ‘tired’ or not ‘focused’ on the job. But really, it’s not up to us to determine whether or not negligence is present. Finding negligence is the job of a legal professional or lawyer. All facts need to be considered and the right questions need to be asked and answered to find the truth.

There is also contributory negligence. Contributory negligence is when an injured person was partially responsible for the workplace injury. For example, if he or she forgot to wear safety clothing, but the workplace was hazardous.

Here is a common law case example;

Worker A was told to cut grass in a field. Another worker, Worker B was supposed to inspect the area for any items that needed to be cleared prior to the grass being cut. It wasn’t and as a result Worker A went to cut the grass and drove over a gas bottle causing an explosion. The explosion caused extensive injuries to his body including severe burns that would affect his skin for the rest of his life. As a result he would have stay out of the sun, wear special protective clothing and his life would never be the same again.

This type of injury causes a huge amount of pain and suffering. Firstly in a physical sense and then there are the emotions that are affected too. These unfortunate experiences can have an impact on relationships and they are greatly affected.

In addition there are also the financial strains upon an injured victim and their family when a household income is affected.

While a common law claim may take longer to settle, it also takes into account future economic losses and expenses following your injury. It also awards you for pain and suffering. It also gives injured victims a sense of closure and some level of justice. When an employer accepts they were negligent, a victim can move on knowing that justice has been served. It also means that the employer may improve working conditions or take greater care of their workers in the future, which is something positive to come out of it.

It is wise to never accept an offer or a lump sum from an insurer i.e. WorkCover unless you have spoken to a member of the Australian Injury Helpline by calling 1300 006 766. The Australian injury Helpline will arrange professional specialist advice from a lawyer if required.

State or Territory of Injury
Details about your injury ?
Please provide some facts including type of injury, date of injury, place of injury and cause of injury.

Work Cover essential information!

If you have suffered a bad experience in the form of a workplace injury, dealing with being on workers comp, (work cover claim) as well as trying to recover from your injury, can be challenging in many ways.

It is challenging financially

The financial aspect of not being able to work can be straining. You may start off on workers compensation full pay and then it changing to half pay at some point. This can be a financially stressful time – the last thing you need when you are injured, trying to rehabilitate and get your health back on track as best as you can.

Then, once your injury has settled, it is then assessed by a Work Cover approved doctor. What happens during this medical is that a percentage of impairment is given by this particular doctor. This percentage will help Work Cover determine a lump sum payment to be offered to you.

The percentage of impairment is only this one particular doctors’ opinion and even if they give you 0% you may still be entitled to a lump sum payment.

Lump sum payment

Once a decision regarding lump sum payment is made an offer letter will be sent to you. At this point it is very important to get a second opinion before you sign or accept any offer.

You can do so by calling the Australian Injury Helpline on 1300 006 766. Getting advice can make a huge difference to the amount you are awarded. For example, if your injury is permanent and as a result of someone elses’ negligence, you may be entitled to a common law claim (or negligence claim). This type of claim is only available if you have refused the lump sum or have not yet accepted. Once you have signed you may be signing away all rights to a common law claim.

A common law claim is a lump sum payment that is much greater than a Work Cover claim lump sum. A common law claim takes into account any future losses as a result of your injury. This maybe your lost future earnings, future expenses and in some cases may be a difference between an award of $20,000 and over $100,000. It also takes into account your pain and suffering. A Work Cover claim does not consider this at all.

State or Territory of Injury
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Please provide some facts including type of injury, date of injury, place of injury and cause of injury.

Lawyers–What If They Abuse Their Power?

Lawyers in law firms, like any place where there is authority there are unfortunately a minority (we hope) of individuals who abuse it. Ever hear of the term ‘Good cop, bad cop’? where there is money and power there are opportunists lurking.

You may have been through a major ordeal and after finding yourself a lawyer, you go onto find out that they are a crook. This is the last thing you need. A misplace of trust when so much lies at stake is a scary thought but don’t fret, there are options.

So what should you do if you are with a lawyer who sadly, is not in the legal industry for the right reasons? By right reasons I mean to help people and not in it for the money or hungry for the power.

A Reputable Lawyer Means You May Get Maximum Compensation Call 1800 006 766 Today

Well, firstly you are able to change your lawyer at any time. Yes it may cost in extra law fees but if they are crooks they may overcharge you anyway – do you see my point?

Just know there is a way out at any time and allow yourself to take it. As a client you have every right to proper legal services and to receive genuine help, not a headache. Like a bad marriage, you can leave at anytime.

If you are in the process of looking for a law firm – do your homework!

Well, firstly prevention is better than cure. Make every effort to avoid an unsavoury lawyer in the first place. You can do this by only going with one that is recommended. What if you don’t know anyone who has ever used a law firm? No worries. Call the Australian Injury Helpline on 1800 006 766. They will provide you with free information and put you in touch with law firms who specialise in your type of work compensation claim or car accident claim, will charge reasonably and treat you fairly.

State or Territory of Injury
Details about your injury ?
Please provide some facts including type of injury, date of injury, place of injury and cause of injury.

Dubious law firms and shifty lawyers – can they be avoided?

Law firms are an interesting kettle of fish. I am not one to generalise considering myself to be an ‘open minded’ individual. Old sayings like ‘Never trust a lawyer’ or ‘Never trust and arab’ are narrow-minded and based on an outdated and negative mass consciousness – aren’t they? Well I would like to think so but having dealt with lawyers first hand, they do have an element of ‘distrust’ around them. Lady Justice for Work Compensation Claims

I’m not sure if it’s a case of; they are suspicious of everyone and everything and so their distrust reflects ours. Or, they are so emotionally detached from their work that we think they might not even be human! The bottom line is, no group of people can ever be the same – so we have to believe we will find a good one amongst the group.

Call The Australian Injury Helpline on 1800 006 766 – One Call May Make a Huge Difference To Your Claim

There may come a time when we need to engage the services of a law firm. One example is following work place injuries. In this situation a law firm can help us get the work compensation we legally and rightfully deserve, particularly in cases of negligence.

If you are searching for a law firm to represent you, finding the right one can be challenging to say the least. But what if you engage one and they disappoint you or try to charge extortionately?

I have put together a list of pointers to help you choose well, so you can avoid any dramas.

1. Have a positive attitude

Sharing the belief that all law firms are dodgy or all lawyers are shifty is not going to help your cause. You may help manifest that very scenario. Having a positive attitude about your lawyer will ensure a good relationship. A lawyer is there to help you and if you believe you will find a good one there is every chance you will. Be discerning and trust your instincts. One of my own sayings goes ‘If in doubt – don’t do it’. Appoint them only if it feels right.

2. Follow recommendation

If you know someone who has been in the same situation i.e. a workplace accident caused by negligence, talk to them. Find out how they got on. Ask them if they were happy with the services of the law firm. If you don’t know anyone call the Australian Injury Helpline who offer a referral service to approved law firms.

3. Be comfortable with how they operate

Ask them to explain the process clearly to you in terms of how they operate and how they charge. Many law firms offer ‘no win no fee’ services. Find out what this means. Some no win no fee arrangements can be a little misleading. With a greater understanding and all grey areas explained you will feel more comfortable.

4. Trust in a positive outcome

Faith and total trust in justice and that everything will turn out for the best can be a great help. The mind is a powerful tool and it can serve us well. Keep the faith and know you deserve justice and compensation. Some cases can take a long time and avoiding unnecessary stress or anxiety wherever you can is recommended. If you are not happy with your lawyer, also know you can change at any time. The Australian Injury Helpline can also help in this regard.


State or Territory of Injury
Details about your injury ?
Please provide some facts including type of injury, date of injury, place of injury and cause of injury.

Workers Comp

Workers comp is an abbreviation of ‘work compensation’ and it means the same.

If you are receiving workers comp then you must have suffered a workplace injury and that may be a physical injury or a psychological injury. Psychological injuries are much more complex, but if it happened while you were at work then you ought to be entitled to workers comp.

Work Compensation laws under the applicable Workers Compensation Acts across Australia vary from State to State. Where your injury took place will have a real bearing on where you stand legally and what your rights to workers comp are. To find out important information on work compensation call the Australian Injury Helpline on 1800 006 766. This independent organisation will provide you with the facts depending on where your workplace injury happened. If you need to speak with a lawyer, they also arrange specialist advice and their services are free.

When workers suffer workplace injuries there are procedures that need to be followed.

• You must report the injury to your employer
• Lodge a claim for work compensation (i.e. work cover)
• Get medical attention
• Call the Australian Injury Helpline on 1800 006 766

If you have any issues with your workers comp payments or if your claim is rejected call the Australian Injury Helpline. Even if your claim is accepted, call 1800 006 766. There are important facts you need to be aware of, particularly if your injury is likely to be permanent  and happened as a result of someone else’s negligence. You may also be enitled to injury compensation under common law.

Common law claims are of a larger nature as they take into account future enconomic losses. In some States or Territories you may or may not qualify for a common law claim. You may need specialist legal asdvice and the Australian Injury Helpline can point you in the right direction.

By being in the know you can make sure you get everything to which you are entitled. Call us today on 1800 006 766 for an information pack on work compensation. For more information on compensation for an injury click here.


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