Everything to know about Statutory Offer Workcover in QLD
If you’ve suffered a work-related injury or illness in Queensland, you may be entitled to make a workers compensation claim no matter who was at fault. This type of claim is known as a statutory claim.
At LHD, our specialist team hold a wealth of knowledge in statutory claims and common law, so you can feel confident in making your claim and knowing when to accept or decline a statutory offer.
What is a statutory offer?
A statutory offer is an offer of compensation made when a worker makes a statutory claim for injuries sustained in a work-related accident. In Queensland, workers compensation operates under a ‘no-fault’ scheme (known as a statutory claim). This means that all workers injured during or because of work can claim benefits no matter who was at fault. A statutory claim can include weekly offers (to replace lost income) and lump sum payments to compensate for permanent impairment and medical expenses.
What is the difference between common law and statutory law?
If you’re involved in a workplace accident, there are two types of claims that can be made: Statutory (no-fault) claims and common law claims. The difference between them largely involves the amount of compensation offered and whether or not someone else’s negligence caused the accident.
- Statutory claims: When making a statutory claim due to a workplace accident, you don’t need to prove that your employer was at fault. Typically, these types of claims are the fastest way to obtain compensation; however, the compensation you may receive is typically less than common law claims. Your benefits may include weekly payments for lost wages, payments for hospital, medical or treatment costs, and a statutory offer of compensation for permanent impairment.
- Common law claims: Common law claims are based on the negligence of your employer or a fellow employee and must include evidence that your injury was sustained due to another person’s actions. You may be able to receive more compensation, including compensation for pain and suffering, loss of income, and past, present and future medical treatment, aids and equipment.
A common law claim can only be pursued after WorkCover has lodged and accepted a statutory claim.
Do I have a statutory claim?
A statutory claim is generally made through WorkCover Queensland (the primary provider of accident insurance for work-related injuries in Queensland). They work with you, your employer and medical professionals to help you recover from your injuries.
All compensation claims for work accidents in Queensland must first be made as a statutory (no-fault) claim. If you’ve been injured in a work-related accident – no matter who’s at fault – you can make a statutory claim and may receive a statutory offer, which you’re entitled to accept or reject.
What is the statutory claim process in QLD?
When you begin a statutory claim with WorkCover Queensland, you’ll be provided with a claim number (often within three days of making your claim). After you receive a claim number, the process typically involves:
- Initial information gathering: WorkCover QLD will give you an opportunity to provide any relevant information about the accident and your injury. At the same time, they will contact your employer to notify them about the claim and confirm information about your employment (such as your wage).
- A detailed review: WorkCover will review all information to determine whether there is a statutory claim, as well as appropriate compensation. They will review information collected from you, your employer, your doctor and witnesses to the accident and confirm that you made your claim within the time limits, you were employed at the time of your injury, and your injury was caused by a work-related accident.
- Receiving a statutory offer: If the information assessed shows that you’re eligible for compensation, you’ll be made a statutory offer, which you can choose to accept, reject, or disagree with.
Before beginning a statutory claim, it’s important to seek legal representation to fully understand your rights and entitlements. At LHD, we’re here to help make the process as simple and stress-free as possible by assisting you with your claim and alleviating any confusion or uncertainty about accepting or rejecting a statutory offer.
What payments are covered under a statutory claim in QLD?
In Queensland, statutory claims are paid regardless of who caused the injury, so you may still receive benefits even if you were at fault. To maximise your compensation, you should always seek help from a legal professional as soon as possible following your injury. With the right professional guidance, you may be able to receive compensation for:
- Loss of income (received as weekly payments)
- Permanent impairment (received as a lump sum)
- Hospital and medical expenses
When making a statutory claim, you don’t need to prove that your employer was at fault, so statutory claims are often the fast way to receive payments. However, lump sum payments for statutory claims are typically smaller than common law claims.
Can I reject a statutory offer?
If you’ve been assessed as having a permanent impairment and, as a result, you’ve been made a lump sum compensation offer by WorkCover Queensland, you can choose to:
- Accept the statutory offer and forego a common law claim (if your injuries are assessed at 20% or above, you can accept the offer and still pursue a common law claim)
- Reject the statutory offer and pursue a common law claim
- Disagree with the amount offered and seek further assessment of your injuries
If you reject a statutory offer and pursue a common law claim, you’ll no longer be entitled to a lump sum offer by WorkCover Queensland, even if you’d like to accept the offer later.
Why should you seek legal advice regarding statutory offers?
Seeking legal advice when making any claim is vital to protect your rights. At LHD, our experienced lawyers are experts in common law and statutory claims, so you can feel confident in making your claim and knowing whether to accept or decline a statutory offer.
Make a statutory claim in QLD today
If you think you have a statutory claim to make in QLD, LHD Lawyers can help everyday Queenslanders receive the benefits they’re entitled to. We’re so sure of our abilities to win your case that we stand firmly by our No Win No Fee Policy: if we don’t win, you don’t pay. Call 1800 455 725 for a no-obligation consultation about your case.