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Rights and responsibilities

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Unless you are a licensed self-insurer, The Workers' Compensation and Rehabilitation Act 2003 requires Queensland employers to insure their workers with WorkCover Queensland. As an employer you have rights and responsibilities relating to your obligation to insure your workers with an accident insurance policy. 

Do I need a policy?

Penalties for not having a policy

If you are uninsured (because you have not taken out insurance or have not paid your premium by the due date) or if you are under-insured (because you have not accurately declared your wages):

  • you may be liable to pay a penalty (s57 of the Act); and
  • we are entitled to recover from you the unpaid premium together with a further penalty based upon the value of the unpaid premium (s57 of the Act).

Workers are still eligible for workers’ compensation if their employer is uninsured and WorkCover must pay compensation to the worker if they are entitled to compensation. If we are required to pay a claim when you are uninsured, in addition to the amounts mentioned above, we are entitled to recover from you the amount we have paid out on the claim plus a further penalty based upon the amount paid on the claim (s57 of the Act).

Renewing your policy

You are responsible for renewing your policy by accurately declaring wages and paying your premium during our renewal period each year. 

How to renew your policy.

Maintaining your policy

You should also maintain your policy throughout the year. This includes telling WorkCover if:

  • your primary business activity changes—this may affect your premium rate
  • your contact details change
  • you wish to authorise anyone from your business to act on your behalf with us.

It is your right to raise any concerns about your insurance with us at any time. Please call us on 1300 362 128 or speak to your customer advisor. If you feel your concerns have not been resolved to your satisfaction, you can make an official complaint.

WorkCover industry classifications

Reviewing a decision

If you disagree with a decision that we have made, you can seek a review with the Workers' Compensation Regulator. The Regulator can review any decisions that we have made in calculating your premium. Read more about the review process by visiting their website.

Your rights and responsibilities when your worker has a claim.

Please call WorkCover on 1300 362 128, or speak to your customer advisor directly if you have any questions about your rights and responsibilities in Queensland.

Appointing a Rehabilitation and return to work coordinator

If you have wages in Queensland of more than 5200 times QOTE (Queensland Ordinary Times Earnings) for the preceding financial year, or are in a high risk industry with wages of more than 2600 times QOTE, you must appoint a rehabilitation and return to work coordinator within six months of establishing a workplace or starting to employ workers. The rehabilitation coordinator must be in Queensland, be employed under a contract, and must be appropriately qualified to carry out their role in the context of the environment they are working in.

“Appropriately qualified” is defined in the Acts Interpretation Act 1954 as “…having the qualifications, experience or standing appropriate to perform the function…”.

More information can be found on the Workers' Compensation Regulator website.

Establishing and maintaining Workplace rehabilitation policy and procedures

If you pay wages in Queensland of more than 5200 times QOTE, or are in a high risk industry with wages in Queensland more than 2600 times QOTE for the preceding financial year, you must have workplace rehabilitation policies and procedures within six months of establishing a workplace or starting to employ workers. The policies and procedures must be reviewed at least every three years. A template is available from the Workers' Compensation Regulator.

Disclosure of pre-existing injuries or medical conditions

In certain circumstances workers may not be entitled to compensation or damages if they aggravate a pre-existing condition at work. This only applies to a process for considering and selecting a person for employment after 29 October 2013, the date that legislative changes came into effect. There are key components and important points for employers to consider. Read more information on disclosure of pre-existing injuries or medical conditions.
Last updated
22 August 2014

Safe Work Month 2014

What’s your most important reason for work health and safety? Get involved with scheduled events during the month of October to help raise awareness on the importance of making Queensland workplaces safer.