Compensation claims available to injured workers
On this page
- Weekly payments overview
- Treatment expenses
- Permanent impairment benefit
- Superannuation entitlements
- Entitlements following a work-related death
- Claim for damages
Weekly payments overview
If you're injured at work and need medical treatment or time off work, you may be eligible for compensation if you've correctly followed the claims process.
WorkSafe pays weekly payments until you can return to pre-injury work. There are statutory time limits – for example your payments are highest during the first 13 weeks. Most injured workers return to work well before this time.
Weekly payments are usually based on the average of the your ordinary earnings from the last 52 weeks. These are referred to as pre-injury average weekly earnings or PIAWE.
If you have a work-related injury or illness, you may be entitled to compensation of the associated treatment expenses. WorkSafe can pay the reasonable costs of approved services – reasonable costs does not necessarily mean payment of the full costs. In some cases there may be a gap between what the provider charges and what WorkSafe will pay.
You can choose which healthcare provider you use, as long as they meet the requirements of Victorian workers compensation legislation.
You can access ambulance, chiropractic, dental, family counselling, MRI scans, optometry, osteopathic, physiotherapy and podiatry services without a referral or initial approval from your WorkSafe Agent.
WorkSafe may also pay for other healthcare services that you can access with a medical referral or with approval from your WorkSafe Agent.
Permanent impairment benefit
If you have a work-related injury or illness that has resulted in a permanent impairment, you may be entitled to a lump sum payment called an impairment benefit.
An impairment benefit payment is separate from any compensation for lost income and medical expenses and you need to meet certain thresholds to be eligible. Examples of a permanent impairment can include reduced shoulder movement, a spinal cord injury and an amputated finger.
Your WorkSafe Agent can tell you how to make a claim for an impairment benefit.
To be eligible you must have your injury or illness properly assessed by a doctor called an Independent Impairment Assessors.
If you're receiving weekly payments because of a work-related injury, you may be eligible for the superannuation entitlement – a contribution paid on top of your weekly payment.
Your WorkSafe Agent will let you know if you are eligible for this entitlement and will organise for payment into your superannuation fund. You can nominate a different fund by sending the choice of superannuation fund form to your WorkSafe Agent, but no more than once every 12 months.
Entitlements following a work-related death
WorkSafe provides support and financial assistance to people who qualify following the death of a worker as a result of a work-related injury or illness. WorkSafe can pay for expenses including medical services provided to the deceased worker such as ambulance, hospital and medical treatment, burial or cremation and family counselling services.
Lump sum payments or weekly pensions may be available for dependant partners, children or orphans, and in some cases, non-dependent family members for reimbursement of expenses in cases of financial hardship.
Claim for damages
If you have a work-related injury or illness, you may have the right to sue your employer for damages. You should seek legal advice if you wish to do this.
To be entitled to bring proceedings for damages in court, your injury must meet the definition of 'serious' in the Victorian workers compensation legislation.
Your legal practitioner will need to complete and submit a serious injury application to WorkSafe before any court proceedings can begin.