On 15 July 2015, the Workers’ Compensation and Rehabilitation and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2015 (the Bill) was introduced into Queensland Parliament. The Bill proposes a number of changes to Queensland’s workers’ compensation laws.
In October 2013, a number of amendments to the Workers’ Compensation and Rehabilitation Act 2003 (Qld) (the Act) were introduced by the previous government. This Bill seeks to amend some of those changes.
The main changes proposed are:
- removal of the 5% degree of permanent impairment threshold for common law claims. This will mean that an employee will no longer need to have an assessed permanent impairment of more than 5% to access common law damages. If this amendment is accepted, it will be backdated and taken to apply from 31 January 2015; and
- removal of ability for prospective employers to request workers’ compensation claim histories of prospective employees, from WorkCover Queensland. However, employers still retain the right under the Act to ask prospective employees to disclose any pre-existing injuries and medical conditions.
The Bill has now been referred to the Finance and Administration Committee for examination.
Clifford Gouldson Lawyers will keep you informed of further developments in relation to the Bill.