What role does WorkCover play within the Workers’ Compensation Scheme to benefit our members?

Risk Matters - Spring 2022

Picture of Rebecca Harris

Rebecca Harris

A/General Manager, Regulatory Services

Rebecca has extensive experience as a public officer across a range of public sector agencies in policy, governance, compliance and regulation. Her previous roles include senior executive positions at the Department of Education, Department of Premier and the Cabinet and the Public Sector Commission.

Who are WorkCover WA?

WorkCover WA is the government agency responsible for regulating and administrating the workers’ compensation scheme in Western Australia under the Workers’ Compensation and Injury Management Act 1981. 

The act ensures workers who suffer a work-related injury or illness are compensated for lost earnings, medical expenses, and other associated costs, and assists injured workers to achieve a safe and sustained return to work.

WorkCover WA’s role is to lead a contemporary, healthy and integrated workers’ compensation scheme that is fair, accessible and cost effective for all participants.

To ensure the scheme operates effectively for the people of Western Australia, WorkCover WA:

  • provides information and education on all aspects of the scheme,
  • promotes injury management and vocational rehabilitation of injured workers to help them successfully return to work,
  • undertakes research and provides statistics in the areas of rehabilitation, injury prevention and noise induced hearing loss,
  • monitors employers to ensure they are insured for workers’ compensation to their full liability in accordance with the Act,
  • regulates and monitors the performance of service providers (e.g., insurers, self-insurers, approved vocational rehabilitation providers and registered agents) to ensure they deliver an appropriate standard of service to workers and employers
  • ensures all workers employed in a prescribed noisy workplace have hearing tests
  • provides conciliation and arbitration services to resolve disputed workers’ compensation matters, and
  • registers agreements where parties agree to settle a claim for compensation.

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Where we’ve been

Over 120 people attended the CEO Breakfast or Local Government Risk Forum on Tuesday 6 September 2022, at Crown Perth.
Representatives from across the state — from Port Hedland to Esperance and everywhere in between joined together to network and explore current risk issues for the sector.

Read More »

Who manages workers’ compensation claims for local government staff?

The Western Australian workers’ compensation scheme is privately underwritten. This means that claims for workers’ compensation are managed by an insurer or self-insurer, not WorkCover WA. 

Most local governments in Western Australia are covered under WALGA’s mutual indemnity scheme, LGIS WA. As self-insurers local governments are exempt from the requirement to have a conventional workers’ compensation policy. Instead, local governments work together with LGIS to manage claims. This could include actions such as approving, pending or disputing claims, paying weekly payments or medical bills, and creating a return-to-work program. 

Insurers and self-insurers are regulated by the Insurer and Self-insurer Principles and Standards of Practice, which are available to download from the WorkCover WA website.

How can I learn more?

A key part of WorkCover WA’s role is providing education and assistance. A range of resources and helpful information is available on the WorkCover WA website.

WorkCover WA also presents industry events for scheme participants. There are still some places available at the highly anticipated WorkCover WA Conference, due to be held at Optus Stadium in November. The program will explore current themes and trends in injury management and workers’ compensation and features inspiring guest speakers such as the Hon Bill Johnston MLA, Major Matina Jewell (Australian Defence Force), Julian Pace (Happiness Co.) and AFL stars Josh Kennedy and David Mundy. All stakeholders are invited to attend!

To register for the Conference, or find out more about WorkCover WA, please visit the WorkCover WA website www.workcover.wa.gov.au

Have a question you'd like answered?

Each month we take your questions to one of our LGIS team members to answer.

If you want to submit a question for next issue, email us at [email protected]

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