Aurenda has been the leader in injury management for ten years and we have seen some interesting changes over that time.
In 2002 the average workers compensation premium rate in Australia was 2.6% of wage roll, compared to 1.6% in 2012 (WorkCover WA).
Average weekly earnings, however, were $697 in 2002 compared to $1526 in 2012 (Australian Bureau of Statistics “ABS”).
This means that if you employed the same 500 people in 2002 as in 2012, your premium would have increased from $470k to $635k. So, you will have to hand over 40% more money and it will be presented as a good news story – maybe some things never change!
Q. What expenses am I liable for when someone has a workplace injury?
Managing Director: The insurance company that underwrites your workers’ compensation policy is liable for wages up to $190,000 and medical expenses up to $50,000 (which can be extended by another $50,000 for a worker with a severe injury). These expenses can be extended by another $100,000 in serious cases, if the worker chooses to take the $100,000 and forego their Common Law entitlement. Rehabilitation can add another $12,000 and there are additional minor expenses, such as travel, that can also be reimbursed. The consequence of these expenses is that it only takes one significant injury to add significant costs to your claims history.
Client Service Manager: A particularly important reminder for businesses with a monthly payroll is that employers must pay an injured worker their wage entitlements within 14 days of the insurer approving the claim. There is a $2,000 fine for failure to do so.
Q. How can I reduce my workers’ compensation premium?
Managing Director of Aurenda: For a small to medium sized organisation (SME), your premium is based on the gazette rate, which is set by WorkCover. The government sets a rate according to the industry you operate in. For example it may be that your industry on average pays 5% of wages in workers compensation. That 5% becomes your premium. If you have a good broker, within that, they may negotiate a claims experience discount (CED) where you may get up to 15% of the premium back if you either have no injuries or if you manage them really well.
Aurenda Client Service Manager: Contact Aurenda immediately on (08) 6389 8900 and we can advise you on how to implement best-practice injury management processes to reduce the cost of claims, which will lead to reduced premiums.