After having visited our site, another brave injured worker decided to share his/her workcover
story ordeal, again highlighting the reason(s) why our workers compensation system is extremely dysfunctional on multiple levels.
Workcover system dysfunctional – injured worker story
Workcover Diary of injured worker ‘A’
“The date of injury is actually the date of an aggravation of the original complaint. The date of aggravation is (day, month) 2013.
Seven days after the claim was made I received a telephone call from Gallagher Bassett (NSW), the reason my claim was sent to the New South Wales office was because my employer is based in NSW and they sent it there. The claims manager who phoned me made a determination to accept the claim.
Within a few days I received letters from the NSW & SA offices of Gallagher Bassett (GB) explaining the mistake and informing me that (case manager) “G” from GB Adelaide would be my new claims manager.
Approximately 10 days later I rang G as I had not been contacted by him. The information from him was that I had not completed a Workcover claim form, so he could not do anything about my claim. I contacted GB NSW and was told they had sent all the information to the SA office including the claim form. I spoke to G again and was told there was no claim form and he said I could go online and complete a form.
I went to the GB website and filled out the SA Claim Form (still available), there was still no response from G and when I spoke to him he told me that the online claim form is not a claim form. I was angry after this and contacted the Workcover complaints department who told me that there were real issues with the way my claim has been handled, by this time I had been without pay for a month.
Workcover contacted me and told me that I needed to supply a new claim form and my bank details and that GB would make a “special” payment so I would receive what I was owed by the Friday of that week, G confirmed this. I did not receive my pay and was told by another manager that they only made payments on Tuesdays.
I ceased working on (day, month) 2013 and received my first pay on 9day, month) 2013. (more than a month later)
On (day, month) 2013 – about a month later- my payments ceased because they had determined that I did not have a claim, that’s when the fun started and I put in an appeal to the Workcover Tribunal.
This process took 10 months and on (day, month) 2014 GB’s rep said that the claim would be accepted. GB held up the signing of the orders by saying they did not know what my average weekly earnings were (well what were they paying me at the beginning?) they were eventually signed on (day, month) 2014 (about three weeks later). It is now the end of (another month) 2014 and I still have not received any back pay.
After many complaints to Workcover and GB and eventually to the Attorney General’s office I have been told to expect it next week (I was told that before).
During the appeals process I was examined by specialists and it was discovered that I have a secondary condition linked to the first and on 9day,month) 2013 a second claim was sent to GB. When my appeal was successful I wrote to GB asking if the new claim had also been accepted, with no reply.
After more complaints to Workcover I was told that the claim was filed and nothing had been done with it. I now have to see the same Doctor who reported that the original claim was not work related, I can see myself back at the appeals tribunal very soon.
I was advised recently (month 2014) that I have to have a work capacity assessment to see if I can go back to work, the problem is that I have not had any treatment yet and for the past 16 months I have been sitting at home in constant pain, doing nothing, and now they want me back at work! I suppose if they can’t get me off the system one way…
Yes I have had depression for many years but I have dealt with it. I am not dealing with it anymore, I have changed considerably and my family has noticed the changes. (the previous section was written (day/month) (recently). ”
Image, courtesy of injured worker “it’s just wrong” – with thanks 🙂