Workers Compensation Essentials for Employers

Posted on: Tuesday, 7 November 2017.

At Country Wide Insurance Brokers (CWIB) our experienced staff are always on hand to assist and guide our clients to meet their obligations under the Workers Compensation Injury Management Act of WA.

We have compiled some essential facts and details that you need to know as an employer in relation to Workers Compensation...

WORKERS COMPENSATION INSURANCE

 

You have a duty to insure

If you are an employer, you are required to hold a current policy of workers’ compensation insurance to cover the compensation payable to any of your workers who suffer a work-related injury or compensable industrial disease.

You are required to hold a Certificate of Currency for workers’ compensation insurance for all your ‘workers’, including cover for common law claims.

Failing to produce a valid Certificate of Currency can incur a penalty of $2,000 and you can face a penalty of up to $5,000 per worker employed during the uninsured period, plus the cost of the premium avoided. Additionally, if a claim is made by an injured worker during the period when you were uninsured, you will be responsible for the costs associated with that claim.

 

Definition of a ‘worker’

The definition of ‘worker’ covers any persons, including family members, paid to work for your business on a commission, piece, seasonal, casual, part-time or full-time basis.

In some circumstances it also extends to contractors and sub-contractors.

 

Frequently asked questions

 

Can working directors be covered by workers’ compensation insurance?

If you are a working director of a proprietary limited company you can opt-in to cover yourself for workers’ compensation. A working director is a director who executes work in the form of personal manual labour or services for, or on behalf of, the company.

 

Who can help me get the insurance policies I need?

Discuss with your Insurance Advisor at CWIB about particular workplace arrangements to ensure you have the right cover for your business.

 

Does my workers’ compensation insurance automatically renew?

No. Obtain a new Certificate of Currency every year as evidence of your insurance policy. Make sure you keep it accessible at your workplace as a WorkCover WA inspector may ask to see it.

 

What if I have Public Liability Insurance?

Public Liability Insurance does not cover you for workers’ compensation claims.

 

CLAIMS MANAGEMENT

 

Responding to injuries

When an injury occurs in your workplace you must make sure:

  • The worker immediately receives first aid if required
  • The worker visits a qualified medical practitioner of their choice to obtain a First Certificate of Capacity
  • The worker is advised about the injury management process and how to lodge a workers’ compensation claim.

 

You must lodge a claim within five days

Once the injured worker submits both a Workers’ Compensation Claim Form and a First Certificate of Capacity, you must submit these documents to your insurer within five days.

Penalties may apply for late submission by WorkCover WA.

 

Commence payments without delay

Once the worker’s compensation claim is approved by your insurer you must begin workers’ compensation payments without delay.

You must ensure the first payment is made within 14 days of the acceptance of the claim – your insurer will advise you of the exact amount to pay.

Compensation must be paid to the worker in the usual manner and on their usual payday.

You must continue to make payments until you are advised by your insurer that payments can cease.

 

INJURY MANAGEMENT & RETURN TO WORK

 

Be prepared with an Injury Management System

You must have in place an Injury Management System which provides a written description of the steps to follow when there is an injury in your workplace.

 

You must implement a Return to Work Program

An early return to work is the best possible outcome for an injured worker and your business.

It is important to remain involved throughout the claims process and work together with the injured worker, your insurer and the treating medical practitioner to achieve a successful return to work.

You are required to develop a written Return to Work Program for an injured worker as soon as their medical practitioner has issued a Certificate of Capacity indicating they can return to work in some capacity.

Discuss with your Insurance Advisor at CWIB or Insurer Claims Manager if you require an injury management template which can be adapted to suit your workplace.

 

You can use a workplace rehabilitation provider

Workplace rehabilitation providers (WRP) are health professionals such as occupational therapists, physiotherapists or psychologists who can assist with addressing return to work barriers.

Discuss with your Insurance Advisor at CWIB if you require an injury management template which can be adapted to suit your workplace

If you require further information on Workers Compensation please contact us, call us on (08) 6279 2300 or email us at info@cwib.com.au

Disclaimer

This publication contains information regarding workers’ compensation and injury management. It is intended to provide general information only. This article should be read in conjunction with the Workers’ Compensation and Injury Management Act 1981. You should seek appropriate legal/professional advice about your particular circumstances. For more information, visit the WorkCover WA website at www.workcover.wa.gov.au.

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