you've suffered a work related injury and you're not able to work
because of that injury then you're entitled to receive weekly
payments of income maintenance. How much you get will be based on a
calculation known as "Average Weekly Earnings".
Average Weekly Earnings are generally calculated by averaging
your earnings for the twelve month period leading up to the date of
your workplace injury. Here's an example:
If you worked for 52 weeks (1 year) leading up to the date of
your injury and earned $52,000.00 then you would be entitled to
payments of income maintenance of $1,000.00 per week.
Sometimes the period of time worked prior to suffering an injury
is less than 52 weeks. Then different methods for calculating your
entitlement are able to be used. For example; if you worked
for 9 months prior to your workplace injury then your earnings over
that period may be divided by the exact number of weeks to work out
the average. So let's say you earned $49,500 in that nine months
(which we will call 33 weeks), you're payments of income
maintenance would be calculated at $49,500 divided by 33, giving
you weekly payments of $1,500.00.
If you were only employed for a few weeks then the average may
be worked out by calculating what a similar worker, doing the same
job, with the same employer has earned over a longer period of
If you provide a WorkCover Medical Certificate stating that you
are totally incapacitated for work then you are entitled to 100% of
your Average Weekly Earnings for 13 weeks. Then if you're still
totally incapacitated after the 13 weeks, you are entitled to 90%
for a further 13 weeks. And then if you're still totally
incapacitated your entitlement reduces to 80% of your Average
If you are able to do some work, but not your full pre-injury
hours and duties then you are entitled to receive "top up" payments
of income maintenance at the rate of 100% of the difference between
your actual earnings and your Average Weekly Earnings for the first
13 weeks, moving to 90% of the difference for the next 13 weeks and
80% of the difference after that.
It's very important that you have a current WorkCover
Certificate stating your level of incapacity for work to ensure
that your weekly payments of income maintenance continue and
continue at the correct rate.
We know we've included a lot of facts and figures in this blog
and that it's not necessarily straight forward. If you're on
WorkCover and you're not sure you're getting the right level of
weekly income payments, make sure you get experienced legal advice
from a solicitor who works consistently on WorkCover issues.
At Andersons, our Senior Associate in Civil Litigation, Marion
Williams is an experienced solicitor for injured workers. Why
not get in touch with Marion by visiting her web profile.
Please note, this Blog is posted in Adelaide, South
Australia. It relates to South Australian legislation.