Your NSW workers’ compensation FAQs – Part 2

Everyone has the right to go to work each day, knowing they’ll come home safely. If you’ve been injured or become ill at work you may be entitled to make a claim for workers’ compensation to cover lost wages, medical and rehabilitation costs, retraining expenses or a lump sum payment for permanent injuries. 

There have been a lot of changes to arrangements in NSW for seeking workers’ compensation in recent years. You could be forgiven for being a little confused about where to start. After all, workers’ compensation laws and entitlements are already a little hard to keep up with because they vary between states and territories and may be known as WorkCover, CTP or WorkSafe. Compensation and benefits can vary greatly depending on your injury and on the law you’re covered by. 

If you’ve been injured at work in NSW, Littles has you covered. Part 2 of our NSW WORKERS’ COMPENSATION FAQS is intended to ensure you know your rights if you or someone you know is injured at work. 

Read more here: Your NSW workers’ compensation FAQs – Part 1 – Littles

1.  What types of injury or illness do I need to have in order to claim for workers’ compensation in NSW? 

You can have a workers’ compensation case in NSW for any of the following: 

  • brain injuries
  • neck and spinal injuries
  • chemical and asbestos exposure
  • industrial deafness
  • repetitive strain injuries
  • construction injuries
  • farming injuries
  • back and spinal injuries
  • arm injuries
  • hand or finger injuries
  • leg injuries
  • foot or toe injuries
  • head or eye injuries
  • death dependency
  • cancer conditions
  • heart attacks
  • strokes
  • fractures
  • soft tissue injuries
  • lung conditions
  • psychological conditions
  • infectious conditions
  • diseases caused by work
  • diseases or pre-existing conditions made worse by work
  • injuries suffered whilst travelling for work
  • injuries suffered while receiving medical treatment for a separate work injury


2.  How much will I receive if my NSW workers’ compensation is successful?

The amount you will be able to claim will depend on your individual situation, and the circumstances in which you became injured or ill. Once we have put together the evidence to support your claim, we should be able to give you a better idea of what to expect. To ensure you get the best outcome from your claim, it’s important that you seek high quality legal advice. This is particularly important in NSW, where most workers with a work related injury are limited to being able to claim work injury damages for past loss of earnings and future loss of earning capacity only.

This type of compensation is often referred to as ‘modified common law damages’. If you have a work related injury which resulted from your employer’s negligence, there are certain circumstances in which you may sue for modified common law damages. These are known as ‘work injury damages’. A work injury damages settlement extinguishes all further entitlements to workers compensation benefits (including weekly payments, medical, hospital and rehabilitation expenses) associated with that injury. The amount of weekly payments that you have already received must be repaid out of the settlement amount.

The amount of damages payable can also be reduced if the worker’s own negligence contributed to the injury. To claim work injury damages, the following criteria must be met:

  • the work injury must be the result of employer negligence
  • you must have at least 15 per cent permanent impairment (assessed by a permanent impairment assessor with qualifications, training and experience relevant to the body system being assessed), and
  • you have received all statutory lump sum entitlements for permanent impairment to which you are entitled. This must take place before a work injury damages claim can be settled.

Some work injury damages claims may result in court proceedings. Court proceedings for work injury damages must generally begin within three years of the injury date.

3.   What am I entitled to claim?

If your injury has been caused by the negligence of your employer, compensation may be payable for:

  • lost income (both past and future)
  • lost superannuation, and
  • your permanent disability / impairment.

However, as noted above, this will depend on your individual situation and the circumstances in which you became injured or ill at work.

Read more here: Help! My NSW workers’ compensation claim has been rejected. What do I do? – Littles

4.   How long will my claim take? How much will it cost me?

Workers compensation claims can generally take up to a year or two to reach a successful conclusion under NSW law. However, this will depend on your injuries, how serious they are, and what treatment you will need before your injuries stabilise. If you have been injured at work it’s important you seek legal help straight away, because there are specific deadlines which if missed will make you unable to claim compensation. We understand the importance of resolving your claim quickly and will seek to get you the best outcome for you as quickly as possible so you can focus on getting your life back on track.

For workers’ compensation claims in NSW there are no out of pocket costs to injured workers. If you are eligible to make a statutory workers compensation claim, we apply for funding from SIRA, so you don’t need to pay anything. For common law claims, we work on a No Win, No Fee basis which means there are no up-front costs and you only pay legal fees if your case is successful.

Don’t delay – seek advice now

Clearly, the workers’ compensation system can be complex, which is why it helps to seek quality legal advice as soon as possible. At Littles, we are experts in workplace injuries, and can help manage the process to ensure that you receive all appropriate entitlements and support. With Littles on your side, we can ensure that you get the fair treatment you deserve.  

If your workers’ compensation claim has been rejected, or you would like to understand how to claim benefits to support you and your family while you are injured or ill, please get in touch for a no-obligation chat. 

IMPORTANT: There are strict time limits for making and disputing a claim, so take advantage of our FREE initial consultation and get in touch. You have nothing to lose by speaking to one of our compensation law experts. The sooner we determine your eligibility to make or appeal a claim, the sooner we can help you to obtain or continue getting funding from the insurer so your rehabilitation can proceed smoothly. 

Free advice and no upfront fees

Not only do we offer a FREE initial consultation we handle most insurance claims on a no win, no fee basis.  

The Head of our NSW team, Jessica Cheung, is an expert in NSW workers’ compensation claims. If you think you might have a claim, reach out to Jessica and her team for high quality legal advice. 

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