Understanding QLD WcompClients and brokers often ask us about workers compensation in Queensland and being a Government run scheme there are important differences. Some of the key differences include Accident Insurance is specific and compulsory cover for employees whereas the optional Workplace Personal Injury Insurance will cover those not deemed eligible under the Accident Insurance. In Queensland, the scheme is operated entirely by the state. The Workers’ Compensation and Rehabilitation Act 2003 (the Act) states that employers must insure their workers with WorkCover Queensland under an accident insurance policy within five days of commencing employment. However, directors, partners of a partnership, sole traders and trustees are excluded from coverage as they are not considered workers.  There is no threshold that businesses must reach before insuring in Queensland and businesses cannot pay for any of their own claim costs in Queensland.

Understanding QLD Workers Compensation – Each state and territory in Australia has its own scheme for workers compensation insurance and each state government regulates the workers compensation scheme in that state.  The various schemes are managed in different ways and insurers may have different roles within the schemes.  In Western Australia, Tasmania, Northern Territory and ACT, insurers privately underwrite the scheme. In NSW, Victoria and South Australia, insurers operate as scheme agents on behalf of the government authority.

Accident Insurance

Businesses that employ workers in Queensland are required to insure their employees against workplace accidents with WorkCover.  It is compulsory for them to have an accident insurance policy, this policy as opposed to workers compensation policies in underwritten states, does not cover working directors of a company, trustees of trusts, or partners in a partnership.

WorkCover’s accident insurance policy insures businesses against all statutory and damages claim costs in the event of a work-related injury to their workers. There are no limits or caps to the number of claims that can be made against a policy.

Workplace Personal Injury Insurance

 Workplace personal injury insurance is an optional insurance that covers anyone deemed an eligible person who is not covered under an accident insurance policy. An eligible person, is an individual who, other than as a worker, receives remuneration or other benefit for performing work, or providing services as a contractor, a self-employed individual, a director of a company, a partner of a partnership, a trustee of a trust. This policy offers coverage in the event of a work-related injury. Injuries incurred while travelling to or from work, while on a break from work, or while temporarily working interstate or overseas may also be covered.

All people deemed eligible can insure themselves by taking out this type of policy regardless of age or health.

Trust as an employing entity

Trusts are not recognised by WorkCover Queensland as employing entities. If workers are paid by a trust, the trustee’s (i.e. a company, partnership or sole trader) information will be required as they will be the policyholder.

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