WorkCover visits 80 construction employers in Cairns

WorkCover visits 80 construction employers in Cairns

Cairns employers were the focus of WorkCover Queensland’s education and compliance team last month as they conducted site visits to more than 150 businesses in the region.

WorkCover met with 167 employers from a range of industries as part of an ongoing state-wide education program to raise awareness of key workers’ compensation compliance issues.

WorkCover found 17 per cent of these employers were not meeting their workers’ compensation obligations by either being under insured or uninsured.

The Cairns tourism sector showed promising workers’ compensation compliance performance with a nine per cent non-compliance rate from a total of 47 site visits.

“This is a good result for tourism in Cairns and we will continue to help employers maintain a safe and healthy work environment and meet their workers’ compensation and return to work responsibilities,” WorkCover Education and Compliance Manager Erin Leftwich said.

Meanwhile, WorkCover’s visits to 80 construction employers in the region found 20 per cent did not have the right level of cover.

“Some employers were not aware of their obligations to insure workers and they may not realise that some individual contractors, depending on how they are engaged, may still need to be covered,” Ms Leftwich said.

“We will continue to work with employers in the Cairns region to help them understand their obligations, particularly in relation to who they need to cover for workers’ compensation insurance,” she said.

“Holding an accident insurance policy means that your business is covered against the costs of work-related injury,” Ms Leftwich said.

“Employers without adequate cover are risking a costly claim which could amount to hundreds of thousands of dollars depending on the severity of the injuries sustained by the worker.

“Feedback from employers has been positive and they appreciated WorkCover’s guidance and advice in building a better understanding of worker’s compensation requirements,” she said.

The 150,000 businesses who are part of WorkCover Queensland’s scheme benefit from the lowest average premium rate in Australia ($1.20) and one of the nation’s fastest return work rates with over 90 per cent of injured workers returning to work within 12 months.

You can check to see if your contractors are ‘workers’ and should be covered by your WorkCover policy by using the ATO employee/contractor decision tool.

You can apply for a policy at any time using our online services, or read more about renewing your policy and declaring wages on our dedicated premium page including information on what wages should be declared.