Comcare – the National Scheme for Work Injury Compensation
Am I covered by the Comcare Scheme?
Comcare is the workers’ compensation scheme that covers Commonwealth public servants, employees of Commonwealth statutory authorities and corporations and also those who work for national corporations who have been granted a licence to self-insure under the scheme, including Australia Post, Linfox, National Australia Bank, Commonwealth Bank, Medibank Private, Telstra and Optus.
The Comcare compensation scheme is similar to the Victorian WorkCover scheme, but is run by the Australian Federal Government under the Safety, Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 1988.
One of our experienced Comcare lawyers can help you identify whether you are covered by the Comcare scheme.
Can I claim Comcare compensation?
You can make a can make a claim for compensation if you are injured:
- While at work
- While travelling for work-related activities;
- While attending work-related activities outside your normal workplace.
In order to be entitled to compensation, you must establish that your injury or illness was caused by your employment or, if your injury or illness was pre-existing, that your employment aggravated or exacerbated the condition.
You can claim compensation for injuries or illnesses such as:
- Musculoskeletal injuries
- Back injuries
- Shoulder injuries
- Arm injuries
- Hand injuries
- Hearing loss
- Effects of strokes and heart conditions
- Psychological conditions
What if I am part-time or casual?
You can make a claim for compensation whether you work full time or part-time. You can also claim Comcare benefits if you are employed as a casual.
Some exclusionary provisions do apply. For example, if you suffer a psychological condition, your claim for compensation may be denied if your condition is alleged to have arisen as a result of reasonable administrative action taken in a reasonable manner.
If you are a family member of a deceased worker, you may also be entitled to compensation.
Where do I start? A checklist for Comcare claims
1. Report the injury
You should report the incident, accident or illness to your supervisor as soon as possible. You should always submit an incident report to your supervisor, no matter how minor it may seem at the time and regardless of whether or not you intend to pursue a claim for workers' compensation.
2. Obtain a medical certificate from your own doctor
You should visit your own doctor, and ensure that the doctor understands that your injury occurred at work. Your doctor will need to provide you with a medical certificate or Certificate of Capacity that gives a precise diagnosis of the condition for which you are claiming workers' compensation, date of injury, fitness for work, recommended treatment and various other details.
Your medical certificate should be given to your supervisor, or your lawyer, who will then attach it to your claim form for forwarding to Comcare.
3. Lodge a claim form
Claim forms can be downloaded or completed and submitted online.
The Comcare claim form is detailed. A Ryan Carlisle Thomas Comcare lawyer can help you lodge your claim and ensure that all the right steps are taken.
It is important to note that neither Comcare nor your employer is required to respond to your claim within a specified time. However, if you have not received a response within 30 days of lodging your claim, call us for expert advice and assistance.
Lump sums can be pursued through Comcare or through the Courts. But if you are at this point, you should call us on 1300 366 441 or find us at an office near you for free initial advice on your Comcare claim.
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