Queensland Consolidated Acts

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Workers’ compensation scheme

5 Workerscompensation scheme

(1) This Act establishes a workerscompensation scheme for Queensland—
(a) providing benefits for workers who sustain injury in their employment, for dependants if a worker’s injury results in the worker’s death, for persons other than workers, and for other benefits; and
(b) encouraging improved health and safety performance by employers.
(2) The main provisions of the scheme provide the following for injuries sustained by workers in their employment—
(a) compensation;
(aa) implementation of the national injury insurance scheme for serious personal injuries resulting from workplace incidents connected with Queensland;
(b) regulation of access to damages;
(c) employers’ liability for compensation;
(d) employers’ obligation to be covered against liability for compensation and damages either under a WorkCover insurance policy or under a licence as a self-insurer;
(e) management of compensation claims by insurers;
(f) injury management, emphasising rehabilitation of workers particularly for return to work;
(g) procedures for assessment of injuries by appropriately qualified persons or by independent medical assessment tribunals;
(h) rights of review of, and appeal against, decisions made under this Act.
(3) There is some scope for the application of this Act to injuries sustained by persons other than workers, for example—
(a) under arrangements for specified benefits for specified persons or treatment of specified persons in some respects as workers; and
(b) under procedures for assessment of injuries under other Acts by medical assessment tribunals established under this Act.
(4) It is intended that the scheme should—
(a) maintain a balance between—
(i) providing fair and appropriate benefits for injured workers or dependants and persons other than workers; and
(ii) ensuring reasonable cost levels for employers; and
(b) ensure that injured workers or dependants are treated fairly by insurers; and
(c) provide for the protection of employers’ interests in relation to claims for damages for workers’ injuries; and
(d) provide for employers and injured workers to participate in effective return to work programs; and
(da) provide for workers or prospective workers not to be prejudiced in employment because they have sustained injury to which this Act or a former Act applies; and
(e) provide for flexible insurance arrangements suited to the particular needs of industry.
(5) Because it is in the State’s interests that industry remain locally, nationally and internationally competitive, it is intended that compulsory insurance against injury in employment should not impose too heavy a burden on employers and the community.

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