You’ve injured yourself at work, now what? This is a question that not many will consider until it happens.  

If you have sustained a work-related injury, we strongly recommend that you seek immediate medical advice from your GP. When you’re at your GP, you should provide a clear history on how you injured yourself, and which body part you’re experiencing pain and discomfort. Just remember, you’re not a doctor (unless you are), so try to avoid self-diagnosing and let your doctor do his/her job and conduct a thorough examination. If your GP agrees that you have sustained a work-related injury and you would like to lodge a workers compensation claim, you’ll need to ask your GP to issue you with a “Certificate of Capacity”. This is more extensive than your usual “Medical Certificate”, but it’s the prescribed Certificate should you wish to make a claim.  

After you’ve obtained your Certificate of Capacity, you should immediately notify your employer, give the original Certificate (make sure you keep a copy for yourself) to your employer and request a claim to be made to their workers compensation insurer. You may be asked to fill in an incident report form, and/or a claim form.  

After being notified of a work-related injury, your employer has 7 days to notify and report it to their insurer. If your employer refuses or delays reporting this to their insurer, you can contact Littles Lawyers for immediate legal assistance in lodging the claim on your behalf.  

Once the insurer has received an initial notification of an injury, it must start provisional weekly payments within 7 days unless it has a reasonable excuse not to. 

The insurer may make provisional payments before it determines liability to cover: 

 • up to 12 weeks of payments for loss of income 

 • up to $10,000 for reasonably necessary medical treatment. 

One of the main goals of provisional liability is to allow insurers to provide the injured worker with financial assistance and early medical intervention while they undertake any necessary investigations and determine full liability.  

Once the insurer accepts provisional liability and if your GP has certified that you need time off work (i.e. have no current work capacity), then the insurer will commence payment of your weekly benefits (wage loss payments). For more information regarding this type of compensation benefits, please visit our other article titled “NSW WC: Summary of weekly benefits (wage payments)”.  

The insurer will also be liable to pay for your reasonably necessary medical treatment expenses. This may include your visits to your GP, physiotherapy, radiology scans, specialist consultations, counseling and pharmaceutical expenses. For more information regarding reasonably necessary treatment expenses, please visit our other article titled “NSW Workers Compensation: What is considered a reasonably necessary treatment expense?”.  

We can say with confidence that not all claims are the same. You may have injured at the same workplace with your colleague, you may have injured the same body part, it could be due to the same negligence by your employer, but the impact on you and your body will be totally different to your colleague, and therefore it is crucial that you seek your own independent legal advice to make sure you cover all grounds and maximise your entitlements to compensation.  

Our Head of NSW Claims, Jessica Cheung is an approved lawyer with the Independent Legal Assistance and Review Service (ILARS) scheme and therefore we can apply for ILARS grant funding on your behalf. If IRO approves your ILARS grant application, IRO will pay for your legal fees and any disbursements.  Therefore, you can access and retain our legal services to provide you with comprehensive legal advice with no cost payable by you. 

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