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WorkCover Internet > Injuries and claims > Benefits and entitlements > Weekly payments

Weekly payments 

 

A worker may be entitled to weekly payments when a workplace injury has resulted in a loss of earnings.

If a claim was made before 1 October 2012 these changes did not apply until 1 January 2013 with some exceptions.  

 

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Note: If you are a police officer, paramedic, fire fighter, volunteer bush fire fighter or emergency services volunteer or coal miner, or are making a dust disease claim, you are exempt from some 2012 reforms Skip over the following text and read the section for exempt claimants.

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0 to 13 weeks of weekly payments (first entitlement period)

A worker has an entitlement to weekly payments during the first entitlement period when they have reduced capacity for work because of a workplace injury that has resulted in a loss of earnings.

The weekly payment is made up to 95 per cent of pre injury average weekly earnings based on your current work capacity and any current earnings.

 

14 to 130 weeks (second entitlement period)

A worker has an entitlement to weekly payments during the second entitlement period when they have reduced capacity for work because of a workplace injury that has resulted in a loss of earnings.

Where the worker has no capacity for work or has capacity for work and is not working or working less than 15 hours per week, the weekly payment is made up to 80 per cent of pre-injury average weekly earnings less any current earnings.

Where the worker has capacity for work and is working 15 hours or more per week the weekly payment is made up to 95 per cent of pre-injury average weekly earnings less any current earnings.

Workers will be subject to work capacity assessments at many points throughout the claim to gather information about the workers ability to return to work in pre-injury employment or suitable employment.

 

131 to 260 weeks of weekly payments

A worker has no entitlement to weekly payments after receiving weekly payments for 130 weeks unless:

  • the worker has completed an Application for continued weekly payments after 130 weeks: Form with their insurer
  • the worker is working 15 hours or more per week and earning at least $173 per week and has been assessed by the insurer as indefinitely incapable of undertaking further employment to increase their earnings
  • the worker is seriously injured with greater than 30 per cent permanent impairment

Weekly payments are calculated based on the lesser of:

  • 80 per cent of your pre-injury average weekly earnings minus your current weekly earnings or the amount that you have been assessed as able to earn in suitable employment and the value of any deductible amount, or
  • the maximum weekly compensation amount (see note below) minus any current weekly earnings and the value of any deductible amount

Except for seriously injured workers, workers will be subject to a work capacity assessment at least every two years.

Workers with capacity to work who are not working 15 hours or more and earning at least $173 per week will cease to receive weekly payments.

 

After 260 weeks (five years) of weekly payments

Weekly payments will cease, except for:

  • seriously injured workers (workers with greater than 30 per cent permanent impairment)
  • workers with greater than 20 per cent permanent impairment who have no work capacity (and likely to continue indefinitely) or are working 15 hours or more and earning at least $173 or more per week and who are indefinitely incapable of undertaking further employment to increase their earnings.

 

Retirement

For all workers, benefits cease when they reach Commonwealth retiring age.

 

Requirements for weekly payments

Weekly payments are subject to a number of requirements:

 If the worker does not provide these documents, weekly payments may be discontinued by the insurer within seven days of the insurer communicating the requirement to the worker.

 

Maximum weekly compensation

The maximum weekly compensation amount is capped. The maximum amount from 1 April 2014 to 30 September 2014 is $1948.80.

The maximum amount applicable to earlier periods is detailed in the Workers compensation benefits guide.

More detailed information is available on the following web pages:

 

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Exempt claimants

This section only relates to those exempt from the 2012 reforms such as police officers, paramedics, fire fighters, volunteer bush fire fighters, emergency services volunteers, coal miners or those making a dust disease claim.

 

Weekly payments for exempt claimants

A worker is entitled to weekly payments during any period of incapacity resulting from a workplace injury. Incapacity can be either:

  • total incapacity (unfit for any work)
  • partial incapacity (partially fit for work).

The amount of the weekly payment will vary depending on three things:

  1. whether the level of incapacity is total or partial
  2. whether or not the worker’s pre-injury earnings are paid under an award, industrial or enterprise agreement
  3. whether the period is within the first 26 weeks of incapacity or later.

The maximum weekly payment of compensation in respect of any period of total or partial incapacity for work is capped. The maximum amount from 1 April 2014 to 30 September 2014 is $1948.80.

The maximum amount applicable to earlier periods is detailed in the Workers compensation benefits guide.

Call 13 10 50 for more information about weekly benefits.