In a decision in August 2015, the Fair Work Commission granted a variety of union claims, including a claim by the CFMEU, to insert Accident Pay provisions into the Building and Construction General Onsite Award 2010, the Joinery and Building Trades Award 2010 and the Timber Industry Award 2010.
HIA opposed the claim. However, since the Commission’s decision, HIA has been working to ensure the new provision is simple and easy to understand.
Accident Pay is the difference between the amount payable to an employee under their workers compensation payments and the award rate of pay.
Each state has different formulas for the calculation of workers compensation payments but in some instance, these payments do not include certain allowances and other payments ordinarily received if the employee had worked.
Under the new provisions, generally an employer will be required to pay Accident Pay:
- Once a workers compensation claim has been accepted, from the time of the injury for which workers’ compensation is paid.
- For a period of 26 weeks regardless of whether the incapacity is in one continuous period or not (under the Timber Industry Award this period is 39 weeks for an employee in the General Timber Stream, and 52 weeks for an employee is the Pulp and Paper stream).
- After termination (for any reason including resignation and redundancy) if the employee is still receiving workers compensation payments at that time.
- To a casual employee in receipt of workers compensation payments.
The obligation to pay Accident Pay came into effect from 15 October 2015.
If you have award covered employees who have commenced receiving workers compensation payments from that date, contact a HIA Workplace Advisor on 1300 650 620 to understand your obligations.