Published: 06 July 2016
Author: Peter Claven

What you need to know about WorkCover and work injury

How to get your WorkCover claim started

I’ve dealt with many WorkCover claims over the years, and I find that most people’s claims could be greatly helped with a little more information about how the system works, and how to get the most out of it.

We’ve put together a series of short blogs which is really an A to Z about WorkCover and compensation.

Some basics about the WorkCover scheme

If you suffer an injury, illness or disease arising from, or during the course of your employment you can claim compensation. WorkCover helps injured workers, enabling them to claim compensation for injuries caused or made worse by their employment.

Here are the main types of injuries covered:

  • Physical injuries sustained on the job (the injury doesn’t need to be serious or significant)
  • Aggravation, deterioration or recurrence of injuries, disease, or illness from work
  • Injuries suffered while on breaks
  • Some conditions including cancer, strokes, asthma, heart conditions, degenerative, or mental health conditions that are aggravated or exacerbated by employment.

WorkCover eligibility

As long as you can show some relationship between your employment and your injury, you may be entitled to compensation.

How to make an injury claim

Three simple steps to begin your claim

  1. Report your injury - This usually should be done within 30 days from the date of injury. However, if you suffered your injury outside this period (even, for example, years ago), you still may be entitled to claim compensation. That being said though - the sooner after the injury, the better.
  2. Complete a WorkCover Claim form – get one from your employer, your union, a post office or from a lawyer.
  3. Get a WorkCover Medical Certificate
    • This isn’t required if you are only claiming for medical expenses
    • Need time off work? Then submit the original completed claim form and medical certificate to your employer ASAP
    • Also submit a copy of the form to WorkSafe
    • Keep a copy of your claim form, any medical certificates, and any other documentation related to your injury.

You’ve done all you can do for now. In the next blog I will explain what you can expect to happen next.

Peter Claven is a practicing injury lawyer in Warrnambool and Colac, focusing particularly on TAC and WorkCover.

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