Q&A Workers Compensation
What should I do when I am injured at work?
- Report the injury straight away to your immediate manager even if you only regard the injury as minor.
Fill out and submit an ‘Incident Report’ form.
- If you need medical attention (your decision, not management’s), advise management that you are leaving to get medical attention for the injury.
- You don’t need to seek management’s permission to leave work if you need to see a Doctor. You only need to advise them that you are going to seek treatment from a Doctor and then just leave.
What if management wants to take me to see an InjuryNET/Company Preferred Doctor?
This is your choice, not the company’s. They can suggest it and you can agree to it if you want but if you are uncomfortable about this and would prefer to see your own Doctor, then this is totally your choice. You can say NO and should not be pressured if you refuse their offer.
What if management wants to come into my Doctor’s consultation with me?
Again, this is totally up to you. You can agree to that if you like but you don’t have to agree if you feel uncomfortable with them coming into a confidential medical consultation with you and your Doctor. You can say NO and should not be pressured if you refuse their offer.
If you agree to this, management should not come into the first part of the medical consultation with you while the Doctor is examining you. Management should only come in after the examination and initial confidential discussion between you and your Doctor. When you and your Doctor are ready to discuss rehabilitation options, then, and only then, should management be invited into the room.
What do I need to get from the Doctor?
You need to get a ‘Workers’ Compensation Medical Certificate’ from your Doctor even if you won’t be losing any time off work.
The Doctor will give you the appropriate Medical Certificate either for:
- Total Incapacity: where you can’t work at all;
- Partial incapacity: where you are not fit enough to return to full, normal duties but you may be able to perform suitable alternative duties;
- Medical Expenses only: where you can go straight back to work without losing any time off work but you have incurred medical expenses which could include the Doctor’s bill, physiotherapy treatment and/or prescription medication.
What do I do then?
Advise your employer that you want to submit a Workers’ Compensation claim and ask to be given a Claim Form. Don’t take NO for an answer. It is your decision whether or not you submit a claim. Management’s role is to give you the form you have asked for and send it off to the Insurer after you return the completed form. Their job is not to make judgements on whether or not you should submit a claim.
Complete and sign the Claim Form and hand it back into the store together with the Workers’ Compensation Medical Certificate that your Doctor gave you and any medical bills you have. We strongly advise you photocopy all documentation you hand in.
To ensure that your claim has been sent to the Insurer, phone them a week after you hand your claim paperwork into your store to confirm that the store has forwarded it on to the Insurer.
How long do I have to get my claim in?
Make sure that you hand in your completed Claim Form within 28 days of the injury occurring.
While you can submit a claim any time up to 6 months after the injury has occurred, you won’t receive all the costs you have incurred if you don’t hand it in until after 28 days have elapsed since the injury happened.
Because workers’ compensation is a legal minefield, the SDA advises all members that if you are unsure about any aspect of workers’ compensation, please ring or email the union office.