Resolving return to work issues

What to do if a problem arises while returning to work after an injury.

When a return to work issue arises

It's important that employers, injured workers and other related parties attempt to resolve the matter together. Co-operation and regular, open communication are key components of an effective and sustainable approach to returning an injured person to work.

Options for resolving return to work issues

If a return to work issue is reported:

  • the employer, return to work co-ordinator and the injured worker must meet to try to resolve the issue as soon as possible, but no longer than 20 days after the initial report.

As a guided means of resolving the issue, people involved commonly refer to:

  • an agreed workplace procedure, or
  • a prescribed return to work issues resolution procedure.

WorkSafe's return to work form is a third option for helping to resolve return to work issues.

The form is available when agreed or prescribed resolution procedures have been followed but have not resulted in a mutually satisfactory outcome.

To help decide if you should complete WorkSafe's return to work form, please consider these important prompts:

Do you identify as one of the following:

  • injured worker
  • injured worker’s representative
  • injured worker’s manager / supervisor
  • return to work co-ordinator
  • occupational rehabilitation provider
  • injured worker’s treating health practitioner.

If you answer YES to any of the above:

  • first refer to the workplace’s agreed procedure, or the prescribed return to work resolution procedure
  • if you feel the issue is still unresolved after following one of these procedures, complete and submit WorkSafe’s return to work form.

If you're unsure if these procedures are available at your workplace:

  • speak with your employer, or return to work co-ordinator.

If the 'agreed procedure,' or the 'prescribed return to work resolution procedure' is not available to you:

  • call WorkSafe Victoria's Advisory Services to discuss your options and clarify if you should complete WorkSafe's return to work form.