Changes to workers’ compensation laws: what you need to know.
Changes to Queensland’s workers’ compensation laws will progressively come into effect between 30 October 2019 and 1 July 2020, improving the support for injured workers particularly those with psychological injury.
Our union regularly receives enquiries from members who have sustained work-related psychological injuries and was able to provide feedback regarding the new legislation.
The Workers’ Compensation and Rehabilitation and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2019 implements key recommendations from the 2018 Five-Year Review of Queensland’s Workers’ Compensation Scheme.
Immediate benefits for IEUA-QNT members
The new legislation aims to enhance the workers’ compensation claims experience for injured workers and provide more support for vulnerable workers to recover from their injury, rehabilitate and return to work.
A significant element of our work is to support members in their return to work and, where applicable, in their pursuit of workers’ compensation.
IEUA-QNT members will have immediate benefits from the legislation in the form of enhanced psychological support and insurer discretion to waive time limits if workers are certified with an incapacity for injuries sustained from 30 October 2019.
Enhanced psychological support
Insurers are now required to take all reasonable steps to provide reasonable support services to workers suffering from psychological injuries before their workers’ compensation claim is decided.
This is to assist in reducing the severity, duration and recurrence of mental illness.
The definition of psychological injury now requires a worker’s employment to be ‘a significant’ contributing factor to the injury, rather than ‘the major’ significant factor.
In addition, insurers now have the discretion to accept claims lodged outside the six-month legislated timeframe, to ensure workers who attempt to manage their injury at work are not disadvantaged.
For more information about the new legislation, visit: https://www.worksafe.qld.gov.au/laws-and-compliance/workers-compensation-laws/laws-and-legislation/workers-compensation-rehabilitation-other-legislation-amendment-act-2019/frequently-asked-questions