Australia has the highest incidence of skin cancer in the world with more than 380,000 people treated for the disease every year. At least one out of every two Australians will require treatment in their lifetime for various forms of skin cancer.
Outdoor workers in Australia receive five to 10 times more sun exposure than indoor workers, placing them at an increased risk of skin damage and skin cancer. Construction workers have a higher risk of skin cancer and melanoma than many other workers due to long periods exposed to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from direct sunlight and UV rays reflected from nearby surfaces such as concrete.
If your work has been a significant contributing factor to you developing skin cancer or melanoma, you may be entitled to claim worker's compensation benefits and/or lump sum compensation. Benefits may include payment of medical expenses, weekly payments for lost income, and a small lump sum for permanent impairment. If you can establish that the cancer has resulted in a serious injury and it was caused by your employer's negligence, you may also be entitled to common law damages.
Bree Knoester, partner at Adviceline Injury Lawyers, has a particular interest in assisting workers and their families who have been affected by work related melanomas. If you or someone you know has developed skin cancer and you believe there may be a connection to your employment, we invite you to contact our office on (03) 9321 9988.