When you don’t have any suitable duties

As a return to work coordinator, what might you do if you can’t find any suitable duties for a worker?

Date last updated

Sunday 09 Feb 2020

Industries and topics
  • Return to work

What to do when you can’t find suitable duties for a worker

An employer must provide their worker with suitable or pre-injury employment to the extent it is reasonable to do so.

In most circumstances it will be reasonable for employers to provide suitable or pre-injury employment that is appropriate to a worker's capacity for work.

Completing the WorkSafe step-by-step guide to suitable employment worksheet will help you work through the options available in your workplace as well as document your efforts to provide suitable employment.

If you believe you don't have any suitable duties to offer your worker you should contact your agent as soon as possible to discuss the issue.

Your agent may refer an occupational rehabilitation (OR) provider to your workplace, if appropriate.

OR providers may be able to visit your workplace and assess tasks that may be suitable for the worker.

Even in circumstances where employers report being certain that they have no suitable duties available in the workplace, more often than not, the result of a visit by an OR provider or by a member of the Return to Work Inspectorate is the identification of suitable duties.