Specialities | Workers Compensation

Professional Insurance Brokers represent in excess of 80% of Western Australia's employers for their Workers Compensation needs.

Westminster Broking House has access to in-house and external expertise and experience to provide a full range of risk management and occupational & safety advice to their clients.
The range of services provided is far beyond that of the simple placement of workers compensation insurance. In addition to selecting appropriate Insurers, negotiating the best premiums, checking premium calculations and policies Westminster can;
  • Assess and find ways to reduce risks through auditing &/or assessment of safety management systems.
  • Identify and implement accredited or individually developed injury management, safety and accident prevention programs.
  • Demonstrate the significant effect that injury management and prevention have on minimising premium costs
  • Provide appropriate insurance advice.
  • Assist employers to complete and review all claim forms and renewal documentation in a timely manner.
  • Assist employers in achieving prompt settlement of claims with insurers.

In the event of an injury or disability an Employer must give notice of any disability as soon as practicable. The WC Act states an Employer must also have an Injury Management System and established Return to Work (RTW) Program and in failure to do so the Employer is liable to penalty. A Worker has a statutory duty to participate in such injury management and RTW programs.

Westminster Broking House can assist in these areas and furthermore;

  • Help manage your claims effectively and efficiently to achieve the best medical outcomes for your injured employee.
  • Attend conciliation reviews and informal hearing with employers.
  • Assist in the co-ordination of rehabilitation programs to expedite the return of injured employees back into the workforce as soon as possible.
  • Assessment of the reasonableness of Insurers claims cost estimate to avoid subsequent unreasonable premium loadings.

The Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) has recognised the Insurance Brokers role in that: -

"Brokers are in the unique position of being able to demonstrate to employers the benefits of private sector risk transfer, competition and service…. Brokers also have a special opportunity to deliver solutions to employers and to add value in areas crucial to the success of the workers compensation risk prevention, early intervention and injury management and return to work programs.” (Alan Mason, ICA Executive Director, Insurance Broker Journal, February 1998).

Workers Compensation Insurance, sometimes referred to as Employers Indemnity, is compulsory for all employers in Western Australia. Different states and Territories each have their own relevant Legislation and Cross Border Provisions may apply.

Workers/Employees can include wages and salaries staff incl part time, casual, seasonal workers, workers on commission and piece workers, contractors/subcontractors and their employees, family members and Working Directors. Professional advice is needed from you Broker in this area.

A Workers Compensation Insurance Policy is required to provide cover to indemnify an employer for their Statutory Liability under the Workers and Rehabilitation Act 1981 and will also provide cover for Liability in respect of Common Law. The most recent major overhaul to "The WC Act” was with the amendments from The WC Reform Act 2004

Statutory Law - Benefits payable to injured workers as set by the Act including lost wages, medical bills, rehabilitation costs and lump sum payments. The Act also restricts access to Common Law.

Common Law – Common Law of Tort in Australia, subject to the restrictions imposed by the WC Act. Standard practice by Insurers is to provide a limit of $50 million per person/per event. This can be increased in most circumstances, at a cost dependant on perceived exposure.

If one of your workers has a work related disability and you are uninsured, you will be liable for the cost of that claim. You may also be liable for the cost of any award resulting from action taken at common law.

In addition, WorkCover WA may prosecute any uninsured employer, with fines of up to $5,000 in respect of each worker employed and impose penalties equal to the total of any insurance premiums avoided during the 5 years before the conviction.

Workers Compensation cannot be replaced by Personal Accident & Sickness, an Employer is prohibited in any form from Contracting out of their Liability under the Act or taking directly or indirectly from wages or benefits from a worker for compensation under The Act.
Any employer making employment conditional on an avoidance arrangement commits an offence. Penalty $5,000.
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