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Changes to the Coal Industry Act 2001

Employers in the coal industry must obtain workers compensation insurance

The Coal Industry Act 2001 (the Act) has been amended to include a definition of ‘employer in the coal industry’ which covers any employer in the coal industry ‘whose employees work in or about a coal mine’.

Under the Act, the approved workers compensation company can require employers in the coal industry to obtain workers compensation insurance from the approved company. Currently, the approved company under the Act is Coal Mines Insurance (CMI).

This means coal industry employers whose employees work in or about a coal mine must obtain workers compensation insurance coverage from CMI, whether the employer is a mine operator, contractor or labour hire firm.

When did the change come into effect?

The amendments to the Act took effect on 1 July 2018.

However, a transition period was put in place to give affected employers time to comply with the change to the Act and to ensure that there will be no undue impact on coal mining operations.

The transition period ran from 1 July 2018 to 30 September 2018.

When does an employer need to hold a policy with CMI?

Employers whose employees work in or about a coal mine are required to have a policy with CMI for those employees.

For example, a coal industry employer must have a policy with CMI where they have employees who:

  • work in or about a coal mine for all or only part of a year
  • work some of the time in or about a coal mine, and elsewhere for the rest of the time
  • only work in or about a coal mine, but also have some employees that never work in or about a coal mine
  • provide services related to coal mining, for example, mining equipment maintenance and repairs, and construction in or about a coal mine.

For employees who do not work in or about a coal mine (for all or part of the time), employers must obtain a policy with another workers compensation insurer covering those employees. For most employers in New South Wales, coverage will be under an iCare workers compensation insurance policy .

Further information

For further information about workers compensation insurance arrangements for employees who work in or about a coal mine or to obtain an insurance policy, contact the Coal Mines Insurance Services team on (02) 8270 3257 or at policyservices@coalservices.com.au.