Work related accidents and illnesses can be a cause of deep personal embarrassment and anxiety. Historically, Australian workplace culture has not necessarily looked after the best interests of workers and workers have had to ‘tough it out’ or ‘suck it up’ when dealing with work injuries or illnesses. This is a significant societal problem as workers’ compensation can be claimed in regards to most work-related injuries or illnesses.
WHO CAN MAKE A CLAIM
The West Australian workers’ compensation scheme aims to help workers return to work after suffering from a work-related illness or injury and compensates workers for lost wages, medical expenses, rehabilitation costs, medicines, travel and legal expenses while they are unable to work. The legislation provides a very broad definition as to who is a ‘worker’. Most of us are unaware that you can make a claim for workers’ compensation if you:
- work full-time, part-time or casually;
- work seasonally or on commission;
- work for a wage or a salary;
- are an overseas worker;
- are over the age of 65;
- are employed in Western Australia but your work related incident occurred interstate or overseas; or
- if you resigned from, were terminated or made redundant by the enterprise where you suffered your injury or illness.