Understand your obligations to pay an injured worker when their claim has been accepted.
Payments by the employer
When a worker who has a work-related injury or illness has a claim accepted by WorkSafe the employer can be responsible for weekly payments to the worker and initial medical expenses.
Your worker with a work-related injury or illness will give you their valid medical certificate, which is known as their Certificate of Capacity, using the WorkSafe approved form. This will tell you about any time away from work they need for their recovery, different tasks or duties they can perform to help with their return to work.
If your worker's weekly payments claim is accepted, as their employer you will need to pay the first 10 days of the injured workers time away from work due to their work-related injury or illness, as part of your WorkCover insurance's excess. You will not need to make these payments if you have selected the excess buyout option for your Work Cover insurance.
If you do not have the excess buyout option, your WorkSafe agent will let you know how much to pay your worker. The amount is based on your worker's pre-injury average weekly earnings (over the last 52 weeks or less).
Fill out the calculating pre-injury average weekly earnings form and send it to your WorkSafe agent.
Your WorkSafe agent will reimburse you for any weekly payments that you make to your worker after their first 10 days.
Forward all Certificates of Capacity to your WorkSafe agent as soon as you receive them from your worker. Remember to keep a copy for your own records.
Your WorkSafe agent will keep track of how much you have paid to your worker and make any adjustments, as payments can decrease over time.
For physical injury only claims
For accepted claims with a physical injury only, the employer is also required to pay the first $763 (2022/23 financial year amount, indexed annually) of medical and like expenses relating to the injured worker's treatment. You will not need to pay this if you have selected the excess buyout option for your WorkCover insurance.
Your WorkSafe agent can offer you the option of paying the excess directly to them as a single payment if medical and like expenses exceed the employer excess. Your agent will then manage all medical and like payments on your behalf. This may be a more convenient option, as it will save you time and paperwork, allowing you to focus on your worker's recovery and return to work. Ask your WorkSafe agent if the direct excess payment option is available to you.
After the excess has been paid, your agent will work directly with your worker and their healthcare providers to pay for treatment. If you receive any invoices or receipts from your worker forward them to your WorkSafe agent.
For provisional payments on a claim including a mental injury
Where a worker is entitled to provisional payments on a claim that includes a mental injury, no medical excess is payable by the employer for the life of the claim.
If your worker is entitled to provisional payments on a claim that includes a mental injury and they send you invoices for reasonable medical treatment, advise the worker that these need to be provided to your WorkSafe agent. Your agent will then manage all medical and like payments on your behalf.
If your worker is entitled to provisional payments and you have already made payment on behalf of your worker for their treatment costs, you can ask your agent for a reimbursement.