What Is a Workers’ Compensation Claim? And How Does It Apply to You?

Australia prides itself on taking workplace health and safety very seriously. Still, workplace injuries happen. Australian workers filed 120,355 workplace injury claims in the past year.

The consequences of a work-related illness or injury can be devastating, especially if you don’t know what steps to take.

One of the most important things to do after sustaining a workplace injury is to file a claim. If you don’t have experience with workers’ comp, you might be wondering, “What is a workers’ compensation claim?”

Keep reading to find out everything you need to know to protect your interests after a work-related injury or illness.

What Is Worker’s Compensation Insurance?

Workers’ compensation insurance functions as a safeguard for employees who get injured or develop an illness at work. Employers pay for workers’ compensation insurance to support their employees.

There are many different workers’ compensation schemes for Australian workers. These schemes vary among states and territories.

Workers’ compensation schemes cover full-time workers, part-time workers, and apprentice workers. In some cases, schemes also cover volunteers and temporary workers. Schemes don’t often cover contractors.

Workers’ comp insurance covers employees’ medical treatment when they get injured or ill during the course of work. Workers’ comp can even apply while travelling for work.

What Is a Workers’ Compensation Claim?

A workers’ compensation claim is the form a worker files after sustaining an injury or illness at work. Many workers enlist the help of a workers’ compensation lawyer when filing a work comp claim.

If the work comp claim gets approved, the injured worker gets compensated for their illness or injury. Workers’ comp benefits cover the following expenses:

  • Medical treatment
  • Hospital stays
  • Rehabilitation
  • Compensation for permanent impairment
  • Lost wages
  • Death and funeral costs

In addition, some workers’ comp schemes also cover psychological trauma and mental illness. It is important to check your workers’ comp scheme to find out exactly what it covers.

How To File a Workers’ Comp Insurance Claim

When you get injured or develop an illness at work, you will need to file a workers’ comp insurance claim. Here are the steps you should follow.

Notify Your Employer

It is vital that you notify your employer of your work-related illness or injury. You should do this as soon as possible after the injury occurs or once you become aware of the illness.

Failing to notify your employer within eight business days is an offence unless you have a reasonable excuse for doing so.

Seek Medical Attention

You should always get checked out by a medical professional when you get injured or develop an illness at work. This is not only for your well-being but for the purpose of documenting the extent of your injuries.

A medical professional will assess your illness or injury. Then they will determine the appropriate course of treatment. They will also provide you with a work capacity certificate.

In some circumstances, it may be necessary to seek medical attention right away. Always prioritize your health and well-being. Just make sure to notify your employer within the required time frame.

Sometimes, an employer may require you to see another medical provider of their choice. This is often done to provide additional proof that your injury or illness is work-related.

Hire a Workers’ Compensation Lawyer

Many people find it beneficial to use the services of a workers’ compensation lawyer.

A work comp lawyer will have the specific legal experience and expertise to get you the best possible outcome for your claim. They will walk you through the process and ensure you have the necessary evidence to support your claim.

Submit a Claim

With the help of your work comp lawyer, your next step is to file your claim through your workers’ compensation scheme. Your lawyer will make sure you file your claim properly to avoid any issues getting approved.

Workers’ Compensation Schemes and Resources

Workers’ comp schemes differ across Australia. It is important to check with your workers’ comp scheme to understand the terms of your coverage and how to file a workers’ comp claim.

Here is information about the various workers’ compensation schemes organized by territory.

Australian Capital Territory

The WorkSafe ACT comprises the Regulator and the Office of the Work Health and Safety Commissioner. It manages and administers workers’ compensation benefits.

New South Wales

The State Insurance Regulatory Authority provides an approachable claims management guide.

This guide includes information about workers’ comp legislation, regulations, and claims management. Their goal is to help insurers make the best decisions for communities and to help workers understand their rights.

Northern Territory

NT WorkSafe helps businesses and their workers understand their workplace rights and obligations. It is a division of the Department of the Attorney General and Justice.

It also provides information on safety, rehabilitation, and workers’ compensation.

Norfolk Island

The Norfolk Island Workers Compensation Agency offers many state services to the community. These services include courts and legal services, workers’ compensation, title registration, and others.


WorkCover Queensland provides services and information about work health, safety, and workers’ compensation. It is part of the Office of Industrial Relations.

South Australia

ReturnToWork SA is responsible for regulating the return to work scheme for South Australia. It provides work injury insurance to protect both businesses and their employees after a work illness or injury.


The purpose of WorkCover Tasmania is to advance the safety, well-being, and work health of all Tasmanians. It promotes safe work practices, investigates workplace incidents, and performs compliance audits.


WorkSafe Victoria is the workplace safety and health regulator for Victoria. It also provides workers’ comp insurance.

The goal of WorkSafe Victoria is to reduce harm in the workplace and provide beneficial outcomes for injured workers.

Western Australia

WorkCover WA regulates and administers the workers’ compensation scheme for Western Australia. It also informs employers and employees about how to manage workplace injuries.

WorkCover WA works in accordance with the Workers’ Compensation and Injury Management Act of 1981.

Comcare is a government regulator and workers’ compensation insurer for Western Australia. It works alongside employers and employees to minimize harm in the workplace.

Comcare collaborates with other workers’ comp schemes in Western Australia. Together they create innovative projects and solutions to improve workplace injury outcomes.

Safe Work Australia is a government statutory agency in Australia. It is developing policies geared toward improving workplace safety nationwide.

File Your Workers’ Compensation Claim

What is a workers’ compensation claim? It is the official form a worker must file after sustaining a workplace injury or illness.

Failure to file a workers’ compensation claim properly and on time can result in the loss or denial of benefits.

To ensure you get the best result, get the help of an experienced NSW workers’ compensation attorney. Contact Barwick Boitano Lawyers today to schedule a free consultation to discuss your case.