Property damage

Published: 12 August 2019
Last edited: 12 August 2019

If property is damaged because of a work-related accident, a worker can make a claim for the reasonable costs of repair or replacement.

Property covered includes:

  • crutches
  • artificial members, eyes or teeth
  • other artificial aids
  • spectacles
  • clothing.

The reasonable cost of repairing or replacing these items also includes:

  • any fees paid for consultation, examination or prescriptions necessary for the replacement of the item, and
  • wages lost by the worker due to having to attend a consultation or examination, or to obtain a prescription.

The worker does not have to be injured in the accident to claim for property damage.

Property damage is not covered if the damage was:

  • solely attributable to the serious and wilful misconduct of the worker
  • intentionally caused by the worker
  • not caused by a work-related accident.

What limits apply to property damage claims?

Ordinarily, the maximum amounts payable is:

  • $2,000 for crutches, artificial members, eyes or teeth, other artificial aids or spectacles, and
  • $600 for clothing.

However, these amounts can be increased on a case-by-case basis by application to SIRA, or a direction from the Workers Compensation Commission (the Commission).

How to make a claim for property damage

Claims for property damage must be submitted in writing and supported by evidence. The insurer will use this information to determine:

  • whether the item was damaged in a work-related accident
  • whether the items that were damaged fall into one of the compensable categories
  • the reasonable cost incurred for repairing or replacing the item.

A dispute about a claim for property damage cannot be referred for determination by the Commission until 28 days after the claim is made, or the insurer disputes liability for the claim (whichever happens first).