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Ask Deborah Awyzio Your Own Question
Deborah Awyzio
Deborah Awyzio, Solicitor
Category: Australia Law
Satisfied Customers: 863
Experience:  Bachelor of Laws (QUT), BIT (QUT), Family Law Accredited Specialist, over 12 years experience
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We have had a casual employee make a claim with Work and

Customer Question

Hi we have had a casual employee make a claim with Work and Income as he injured himself on premises, (Dislocated his shoulder, pushing a box) when we were told of the claim we thought we were fine insured but to our knowledge our insurance that we thought that covered us and staff wasn't so. When we brought the business about 5yrs ago all the legal side of things were put in place Insurance, Licenses everything we thought that we needed to run a Wholesale business and then when this happens we find out that we didn't have staff cover. Our insurance only covered us. How were we to know? Our broker, accountant,and even our own solicitor didn't mention it to us through the years. We have owned other businesses and have always done the same as we thought we were doing things my the book.
So we have had legal representative represent us but seemed like she didn't work for us. We accept the mistake of not having staff cover and now premiums have been put in place once Work and Income let us know. Work and Income have been difficult to deal with knowing this was a one off mistake didn't really want to know! A claim had been made and so let the fun begin$$$ is more or less the answer to you will pay! The employee that made the claim has had surgery and is doing physio and any other rehabilitation that is needed. All his medical bills, and wages we are up in the thousands for. Since battling with Work and Income we have learned that the staff members medical records showed that his shoulder has been and on going thing and he has put his shoulder out at his previous job and upon injury he verbally told us that his shoulder pops out quite easily. This Work and Income knows! This is what we are trying to fight and get our heads around as yes! the employee injured himself while he was working for us we don't deny that but what we want to know is why do we have to pay for injuries that recurred in the past.
We are only a small business going up against GOD! Government! Work and Income! This is crippling our business our health and Family we are contemplating on going to current affair as we have exhausted all avenues and nothing left to lose. Only fighting to be heard as we think this is so wrong on so many levels. We don't know what we are to do now as bill of payments just keep coming and coming, as we have been told by Work and Income we keep paying until he reaches retirement age or finds work.
Our business will never survive that long.
So are you able to help or shine some light on this or even give us advice or are we going in circles or wasting our time.
Do you know if this has happened to any other business owners.
Submitted: 3 months ago.
Category: Australia Law
Expert:  Leon replied 3 months ago.

Good Evening.

My name is ***** ***** I am a NSW Solicitor. Thank you for your question, and will do my best to assist you with your question. Please understand this is not legal advise but a guide to assist you.

Your workers compensation insurer should have covered this.

You should have disclosed the employees you had not matter what their position is.

What insurance do you hold? If you have employees and do not have workers compensation insurance you could be facing fines.