Can I claim compensation for a burn at work?

Wednesday 27 June 2018
Linda Hanley

Have you suffered a burn, rash or other skin condition as a result of coming in contact with hazardous fluids or chemicals during your employment?  Do you suffer from a neurological condition as a result of breathing in and being exposed to dangerous fluids or chemicals during your work?

If so, you may be entitled to compensation.

Weekly payments for time off work; and medical and like expenses

If you have suffered from any of the above injuries, it is important to lodge a WorkCover claim as soon as possible.  If your claim is accepted, you are entitled to:

  1. Weekly payments of compensation for any time off work you are required to take because you are considered ‘unfit for work’ by your treating professional (i.e. general practitioner or specialist).
  2. Medical and like expenses for any treatment that you require because of your work-related condition/injury. This includes the payment of consultations with your doctor and specialists, treatment (i.e. plastic surgery) and medication (i.e. oral and topical medication).

A lump sum payment

If you have suffered from a permanent impairment, depending on the nature and severity of your injury/condition, you may also be entitled to a lump sum amount as an additional form of compensation.

Permanent impairments would include, scarring, permanent skin conditions and permanent neurological conditions.

Damages

If you can demonstrate that your injury occurred as a result of the negligence of your employer, you may also be entitled to two types of damages:

  1. Pain and suffering damages and;
  2. Damages for your loss of earnings

Some examples of negligence include:

  1. Your employer did not provide protective clothing for you to wear (i.e. gloves, appropriate footwear, long sleeves, heat or chemical resistant clothing)
  2. Your employer did not provide appropriate splatter guards
  3. Your employer did not provide proper warnings and/or training

 

If you would like further advice regarding an injury caused by working with hazardous liquids and chemicals, please give our free Adviceline a call on (03) 9321 9988 for further advice.

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