If you have been injured at work, you may be eligible to receive weekly payments depending on your capacity for work as a result of your work-related injury.
This page applies to workers injured on or after 21 October.
The first step in claiming compensation for a work-related injury or illness is to notify your employer and the insurer of the injury. If you haven’t done this, please see What to do first.
After the insurer has been notified of the injury, they will contact you to discuss the notification and support available.
You may be entitled to weekly payments when a work-related injury has resulted in a loss of earnings because you have reduced capacity for work.
Exempt category of workers
If you are an exempt category of worker (police, firefighters, or paramedic) please see here for more information.
To demonstrate this reduced capacity, you must provide a completed SIRA certificate of capacity to your employer or the insurer. Watch this short video to find out more about the certificate of capacity.
Once the insurer has received an initial notification of injury it must:
- start provisional payments within seven calendar days unless there is a reasonable excuse not to, or
- delay starting provisional weekly payments by issuing a reasonable excuse within seven days, or
- determine liability
Where the insurer has issued a reasonable excuse, they must give you the following information:
- details of the reasonable excuse,
- inform you that you may make a claim for compensation which will be determined within 21 days, and
- details of how you may make a claim for compensation.
If the insurer has issued a reasonable excuse, you may complete a claim form. Once the claim form is received by the insurer, they have 21 days to:
- accept provisional liability for weekly payments for up to 12 weeks, or
- accept liability, or
- dispute liability.
If the insurer disputes your claim, there’s help available. Our workers compensation disputes section has more information or you may contact the Workers Compensation Independent Review Office (WIRO) on 13 94 76.
If the insurer has accepted your claim for weekly payments, they must advise you of your weekly payment amount. The amount of your weekly payment is based on:
- your pre-injury average weekly earnings
- whether you have current work capacity or no current work capacity
- how long you have received weekly payments for
- whether you have been able to return to work
- your ability to earn in suitable employment
You may receive your weekly payments directly from your employer or the insurer within your usual pay cycle.
If you do not provide a completed SIRA certificate of capacity, the insurer may stop weekly payments within seven days of advising you that the document is required.
Pre-injury average weekly earnings
Pre-injury average weekly earnings are either calculated by your insurer based on information provided by you and/or your employer or determined by agreement between you and your employer. They reflect how much you were earning before your injury.
If you need help or advice, speak to the insurer or contact the Workers Compensation Independent Review Office (WIRO) on 13 94 76.
For more information on pre-injury average weekly earnings, see weekly payments in the claims management guide.
Workers who have an unresolved enquiry or complaint about their weekly payment entitlements with their insurer should contact WIRO by phoning 13 94 76, or visit their website for further information.
To learn more about workers compensation in NSW – including information about weekly payments – see Understanding the claims journey in the claims management guide.
Stopping weekly payments
Your ongoing entitlement to weekly payments is dependent on:
- you meeting your return to work obligations
- work capacity decisions made by the insurer
- whether or not you have exceeded the entitlement period of 130 weeks, and
- whether or not you have exceeded the entitlement period of 260 weeks
- whether you are a worker with high needs.
Work capacity assessment/decision
The insurer assesses your capacity for work based on your functional, vocational and medical status.
They use this information to make a decision about your ability to return to your pre-injury employment, or to return to suitable employment with the pre-injury employer or at another place of employment.
If they determine you have some capacity to work, then your weekly payments may be reduced or stopped according to the amount that you could earn in that capacity.
These decisions can be reviewed and/or disputed. See workers compensation disputes for more information.
If you're receiving weekly payments and reach retirement age, you may be entitled to receive weekly payments for a further period of 12 months.
If you receive an injury on or after retiring age, you may be entitled to weekly payments during the 12-month period that starts from the date of your first incapacity.
The retiring age is defined as the age a person is eligible to receive the age pension.
You will need to provide the insurer with a SIRA certificate of capacity for the period you are claiming weekly payments.
For injuries received before 30 June 1985, your entitlement to weekly payments is not affected by the retiring age.
Maximum weekly compensation amount
The maximum weekly compensation amount is capped and indexed in April and October each year. The maximum amount from 1 October 2020 to 31 March 2021 is $2,242.40.