Are compensation reforms in NSW helping?

Published 12 Dec 2014

Suffering an injury or illness that requires time off work is often inconvenient at best, but can create serious financial and emotional strain for households over the long term.

This is why there are several insurance and compensation policies available that provide much-needed monetary support when unforeseen circumstances prevent employees from working. 

These include total and permanent disability claims, which can lead to a lump sum payment when an employee is unable to ever return to the workplace. Income protection, on the other hand, offers temporary financial support until an individual has recovered enough to continue in their role.

Furthermore, recent statistics from WorkCover NSW show that reforms to workers' compensation in the state are helping both employers and staff navigate the system more easily.

According to Finance and Services Minister Dominic Perrottet, these changes have helped make premiums fairer, more cost-effective and simpler to understand for all parties.

"Importantly these reforms created real incentives for business to encourage safe return or recovery at work for injured workers," he explained.

"All the evidence shows that when employers stay connected to their workers and support their recovery it is good for workers, good for business and good for the economy."

Small employers 'benefiting'

Small Business Minister John Barilaro claimed workers' compensation adjustments are helping start-ups and medium-sized firms the most.

WorkCover NSW statistics revealed there has been a 15 per cent reduction in the number of claims and injuries at small enterprises over the last 12 months.

The return to work rate has also increased, jumping five percentage points from 82 to 87 per cent. Employer paperwork has plummeted by 50 per cent.

Mr Barilaro said: "The reforms are simpler and clearer and unshackle small businesses from unnecessary regulatory burdens.

"The positive flow-on effect of getting skilled workers back into the workplace sooner is a reduction in the costs of claims and premiums, which in turn means less strain on business, jobs and the workers compensation system."

However, employees who have not received compensation and feel they are eligible to make a claim may still have a case. In many instances, workers are covered under an insurance policy of their superannuation scheme.

To see whether or not you could be in line for a payout for an injury or sickness that has prevented you from working, please contact a skilled superannuation disputes lawyer who can help you file a claim.

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