Workers' compensation lawyers - Contractors

Carter Capner Law handles claims for a wide range of workplace accident insurance and compensation claims for contractors and sub-contractors. Our workers compensation lawyers Brisbane and QLD wide can assess your case free of charge and secure the payout or compensation to which you are entitled.

Do you have a claim?

Check to see if you are entitled to compensation. If you have a question, please get in touch with our team.

Do you have a potential work injury insurance or compensation claim?

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What do you do if you have been injured at work in Queensland as a Contractor?

If you are unable to work due to sickness or disability you may be entitled to claim compensation through your super as a Total and permanent disability (“TPD”) claim.

If you have suffered an injury in the workplace you may also be entitled to compensation. Our services include ‘no win no fee’ representation in most cases associated with TPD and compensation claims for serious injury, death, financial loss, pain and suffering, or loss of consortium for family members.

Our workers compensation lawyers Brisbane and QLD wide assess your case free of charge and secure the policy payout or compensation you are entitled to! Our services include the negotiation of out-of-court compensation settlements for all accidents involving injury or death where income has been lost or your income earning potential is affected in cases of physical disablement.

Claims are conducted from our Brisbane Head Office, which is close to major courts and insurers as well as medical and safety expert consultants. Should you prefer, we can also arrange to meet at our offices at the PA Hospital or Browns Plains Medical Precinct.

No matter the worker compensation claim, we handle all types of workplace accidents.

In compensation claims through WorkCover or a self-insurer, damages are available for expense recovery, lost income, loss of future earning capacity, paid and unpaid recuperative assistance, pain & suffering, loss of enjoyment of life and other losses relating to your circumstances. Don’t delay in asking for advice from the workers’ compensation lawyers at Carter Capner Law.

1

Notify your employer of your work-related injury

It is crucial to notify work of your work-related injury ASAP. The next formal step is to complete an Incident Report Form with your employer.

2

See a GP and obtain a Workers' Compensation Medical Certificate.

Go and see a doctor so they can check your work-related injury and obtain a Workers’ Compensation Medical Certificate.

3

Lodge an application for WorkCover claim online

Head to the WorkSafe website and lodge an online application for WorkCover claims.

4

Provide medical and compensation application to the employer.

After obtaining your Workers’ Compensation Medical Certificate and lodging your application for WorkCover claim, provide these two documents to your employer.

Am I entitled to / covered by Workers' Compensation?

To obtain WorkCover benefits, including weekly payments for time off work and the amount of your medical expenses, you must be a worker and have suffered an injury.

A “worker” is someone on PAYG wages or in most cases, a ‘contractor’ paid on hourly or weekly rates which supply no more than labour and hand tools. A genuine subcontractor does not come under the WorkCover system.

If you are a worker who suffers an injury, you are entitled to statutory benefits including:

  1. Weekly payments for time off work;
  2. Payment of medical expenses; and
  3. A possible lump sum for any permanent impairment if the accident happened at work or travelling to or from work.

If you do not meet the two criteria (being a worker and suffering an injury), you may be entitled to bring a claim for damages outside the WorkCover system.

What are the features that make a contract are a "worker" for the purposes of workers compensation?

There is no single formula to distinguish between a true employee and a true contractor.

Important factors are:-
whether you only work for the one employer;
whether the employer supplies materials and equipment;
whether you make your own decisions about the hours you work and how you perform the work;
whether you must fix any mistakes during your own time without pay;
whether your pay is linked to the hours work or work produced.

When can you claim workers' compensation?

You may be able to claim workers’ compensation if:

  • you’ve had an accident at or as a result of work (which may include injuries sustained during a recess, such as lunchtime or morning and afternoon breaks)
  • your health and wellbeing have been affected in the workplace
  • a pre-existing injury or illness worsens in the workplace.

Workers’ compensation covers reasonable expenses including medical, personal, occupational and rehabilitation expenses—and potentially more.

Can I claim damages against the employer if I am a genuine contractor and not a "worker"

Yes. If the employer is responsible for your injuries i.e. an unsafe system of work, then you can claim injury compensation outside of the WorkCover system.

You should get early legal advice from a workplace injury lawyer so that you know exactly where you stand.

What evidence do I need to keep and collect?

To assist your lawyer with the TPD or accident insurance investigation, it is important to try to do the following:

  • Make notes of your recollection of all events relevant to the accident
  • Record names and addresses of witnesses
  • Take photos and video of the place where you were injured. “A picture tells a thousand words”. Sketches are also helpful
  • Take photos and video of any product, equipment or object that injured you
  • Take photos of your injuries
  • Keep any defective product which caused an injury
  • Keep details of your absences from work caused by the injury
  • Make a list of visits to doctors, physiotherapists, chiropractors etc for treatment and follow-up visits
  • Keep all invoices and receipts for medical, chemist etc expenses
  • Record details of assistance provided by friends and family members
  • Collect contractual records. For sporting injuries, this includes club membership application forms and sign-on forms. For injuries in a car park or theatre this includes the entry ticket
  • Collect documents showing your loss of earnings and earning capacity including wage slips, group certificates, income tax returns (for 6 years prior to the accident and each year after), references and resumes

Is my claim worthwhile?

Time limits vary. It is best practice to report an injury from work as soon as possible, preferably on the same day or the day following when the injury occurred.

A workers compensation application must be lodged within six months of the date of injury. TPD claims can be lodged within the time is limited under the policy.

If you are considering a damages claim, court proceedings must be filed within 3 years of the injury date.

Are there any time limits to claim for workers' compensation?

The time limit varies. However, it is essential to report the work-related injury to your employer and the WorkSafe QLD authority as soon as possible. If lodged, your claim is covered within the 30 days you’ve become aware of the injury. This time frame includes you getting a Medical Certificate and submitting an application form.

It’s essential to speak to a workers compensation lawyer if you’re unsure about the amount of time you can claim, even if it’s been more than 30 days since your injury.

What if my employer doesn’t want me to lodge a WorkCover claim?

Lodging a WorkCover claim is an important step in any work accident recovery proceedings including for TPD or accident insurance.

If your employer tries and talks you out of making a WorkCover claim you should get prompt legal advice. You are also not obligated to notify your employer that you intend to make a WorkCover claim. If your employer refuses to assist you with your WorkCover claim, it can be lodged by other means.

WorkCover has accepted my injury claim - what do I do now?

WorkCover Queensland (WCQ) will assess your permanent impairment after you have returned to work after they consider your injury has stabilised or after they believe your symptoms are no longer related to the accident. This will probably occur about twelve (12) months after the accident.

A Notice of Assessment will then issue from them to you expressing their determination of your bodily impairment as a percentage. Based on this percentage, they will offer you a “lump sum” payment.

At that point, you have the following options:-

  1. Accept the “lump sum” they offer; or
  2. Proceed with a lawsuit process that will typically yield you far higher compensation than the “lump sum” provided negligence, i.e. that there was something defective concerning the system of work.

In cases of severe injury, you can do both. This depends on the impairment assessed. Contact us immediately if you receive a WorkCover Notice of Assessment. It would be best if you did NOT accept any lump sum offer of compensation from WorkCover without discussing that with a workers compensation lawyer, as you will risk the loss of significant compensation rights.

My injury is because of a faulty workplace? What other compensation rights do I have?

Rather than accepting a lump sum, you may elect to sue your employer’s insurer for negligence and claim damages (in some cases you may be able to do both). To succeed in a damages claim you must be able to establish that your injury was due to a fault in the workplace (i.e. negligence) and you must satisfy other specific liability criteria.

In most cases, the amount of damages which flows from this type of claim is far greater than the lump sum which WorkCover may offer you under the statutory benefits scheme.

If your work-related impairment WRI is less than 20%, you cannot accept the lump sum and sue for damages. You must choose one or the other.

All matters so don’t delay getting in touch with our workers’ compensation lawyers regarding WorkCover compensation claims. Carter Capner Law is here to help you with your claims. For free, no-obligation chat call our no win no fee lawyers today.

Do I need to go to court for my Workers' compensation claim?

The majority of compensation and insurance claims are settled before court proceedings are started. In the unlikely event your claim ends up in court, your presence is required to determine the outcome of the case.

Can I claim Workers' Compensation while working interstate or overseas?

The fact that a worker is interstate or overseas when an injury is sustained does not prevent Queensland workers’ compensation being payable provided your employment is connected to Queensland for example by being based here, usually working here or your employer’s principal place of business is here.

For workers from overseas injured in Queensland and Queensland workers injured overseas, access to Queensland workers’ compensation depends on the location of the worker’s usual place of employment. The site of your employer’s “principal place of business” is also relevant.

Do I need a Workers' Compensation Lawyer to make a WorkCover claim?

It’s not mandatory to seek legal advice from a workers compensation lawyer to lodge a WorkCover claim or recover for TPD. There are many benefits to secure a Workers compensation lawyer handle your claim:

  • Free consultations – Before proceeding with your claim, a workers compensation lawyer can review your case during an obligation-free consultation. Alongside a workers’ compensation lawyer a dedicated legal assistant will be assigned to the lawyer with your case.
  • Insurance claim expertise – Your workers’ compensation lawyer has experience with negotiating with insurers that can provide you with the ease of mind when accessing your compensation and identifying what you’re entitled to at law.
  • Experienced and time-conscious – It is your workers compensation lawyers’ job to ensure your claim is lodged in-time. Many claimants who self-represent are not well-versed in the time-frames associated with workers’ compensation cases.

Can I also claim income-protection through my superannuation?

Yes, you can, as long you are covered for income protection highlighted in your superannuation policy. If you’re unable to attend your job due to your injury, you may be entitled to request for a superannuation lump-sum.

It is recommended to speak to a workers compensation lawyer to discuss how to take the best course of action.

What is the difference between a ‘lump sum’ and ‘damages’?

If a WorkCover claim has been lodged on your behalf and accepted WorkCover may also offer you a lump sum payment once your injuries have stabilised (usually about nine (9) to fifteen (15) months post-injury).

The offer of a lump sum depends on the level of WRI, which is assessed medically and depends on the nature and extent of your injury.
In most cases, the amount of damages which flows from this type of claim is far greater than the lump sum which WorkCover may offer you under the statutory benefits scheme.

What expenses are covered and benefits am I entitled to?

For workers’ compensation claims, the expenses incur due to the work-related injury includes:

  • Medical, hospital, GP, Ambulance, nursing
  • Rehabilitation
  • Occupational therapy
  • Personal and household

The insurer may also approve compensation for expenses on attendant care, home or car modification, home-care and transportation costs.

Types of injuries that can occur at work.

Damages are available for expense recovery, lost income, loss of future earning capacity, paid and unpaid recuperative assistance, pain & suffering, loss of enjoyment of life and other losses relating to your circumstances.

Head and brain injury.

Spinal and neck injury.

Mental illness.

Ankle, knee and wrist injury.

Upper and lower limb injuries.

Fractures.

Whiplash.

Soft tissue and eye injury.

Shock, anxiety and depression.

The CCL method

Our compensation lawyers will quickly review the circumstances of your case to determine your prospects of a successful personal injury claim. And once we have approved your case the claim process can be promptly started following the CCL method

Process

Assemble the initial information you are able to provide

Proper case preparation demands meticulous attention to detail. That's why right from the start, we collect all the facts and continuously verify them with you and other sources. Constant updates to your comprehensive statement will ensure everyone - you, us, medical specialists and barristers - stay precisely on the same page.

Process

Prepare initiating Claim Notice.

Once sufficient facts have been collected and the identity of the at-fault party confirmed, and initial Claim Notice can be completed in a way that persuasively asserts the basis and extent of your compensation request.

Process

Keep collecting the facts.

Diligent claim preparation requires a comprehensive understanding of your medical income and employment histories. We will obtain records from accident related treatment provided as well as from health professionals who have treated you for any prior conditions. Employment and income records asked also be collected and diligently examined .

Process

Medical investigation of injury.

The extent of accident related injury must be independently verified by medical experts. Because compensation is paid for the permanent effects from an injury, specialist medical assessment is deferred until 9 – 12 months post injury. We'll arrange examinations with appropriate specialists and the insurer of the at-fault party is entitled also to have you examined by its specialists.

Process

Formulation

Once all information has been collected and medical specialist reports obtained, we will carefully formulate the "damages" components of your claim demand. The CCL Method requires that every component - general damages, lost wages, expenses you have incurred, the value of past and future domestic care and the value of loss of future earning capacity - is based on authoritative evidence.

Process

Negotiation

After the insurer has considered your damages ask, a settlement conference is arranged to attempt to negotiate a resolution. Although informal, the success of the conference depends on the extent of preparation that has gone before it. Offers will be exchanged and if the insurer is being reasonable, the conference offers a good opportunity to finalise the claim.

Process

Settlement not reached: heading to court

If you are unable to reach an agreement within 60 days after the conference, a Claim and Statement of Claim must be filed in court in relation to your accident. The defendant may then file a Defence and the court process then continues until the dispute is listed for a trial where witnesses are called to give oral evidence and a judge makes a final determination.

What fees do you pay a solicitor for workers compensation?

Carter Capner Law's No-Win No-Fee terms affords fairness to those seeking compensation for personal injury including loss of income and future loss of income earning capacity. No-Win No-Fee - sometimes called "no-win, no-charge" and "no-win no-pay," allows legal representation to a level equivalent to that of the insurance company that will be resisting your payout. Essentially No-Win No-Fee terms provide that fees and case expenses are only payable when the claim is finalised and only if it is successful.

  • Court Filing Fees

  • Medical specialist consultation & report fees

  • Medical records collection fees

  • Expert report fees

  • Claim investigation

  • Barristers

    We will secure the services of a barrister who will also offer No-Win No-Fee terms

  • Document production

  • Police Report Fees

  • Government agency search fees

  • Freight & courier

  • Office charges

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