A Word from GC Law: Removal of Thresholds for Compensation

The new Queensland Government has proposed legislation to restore rights and entitlements of workers taken away by amendments made to the Workers’ Compensation and Rehabilitation Act 2003 (Qld) by the previous Newman Government.

The proposed changes include the removal of the current limitation on the entitlement to seek damages that requires a worker to have a degree of permanent impairment as a result of the injury greater than 5% to access common law since the date of the Queensland State election (31 January 2015).

So if you’re an injured worker in Queensland, what does this mean for you?

If the proposed legislation is passed, all workers injured from 31 January 2015 as a result of their employer’s negligence can once again seek common law damages for their injuries, including compensation for future loss of income and medical expenses, regardless of the degree of permanent impairment assigned by Workcover Queensland.

This change is vital to restoring equity to the workers’ compensation regime in Queensland as percentages of impairment have little correlation with the real impacts of injuries on people’s work lives. For instance, a 2% permanent impairment foot injury can completely end the career of a manual labourer, whereas an 8% foot for a highly educated office worker while still impacting their ability to earn an income does not fundamentally change their work options.

Due to the complexity of the proposed changes and their potentially significant financial impact on injured workers, it is vital that you obtain legal advice regarding your rights. GC Law can explain these changes to you and discuss how they apply to you and your claim for compensation. Call us on 1300 302 318.