Sunshine Coast businesses have more work to do to ensure they are protecting workers against injuries, according to WorkCover Queensland.
A compliance audit conducted in July found 22% of 188 employers visited were operating without appropriate workers’ compensation insurance.
WorkCover’s targeted on-site audits of businesses in the retail, construction and agriculture sectors found just 64%, or 121 employers, were holding appropriate workers’ compensation insurance.
WorkCover Queensland Manager Financial Control and Reporting, Robbie McLean said Sunshine Coast employers who don’t insure their workers are putting their health and safety at risk at potentially exposing their businesses to significant financial penalties.
”While the majority of Sunshine Coast businesses are pleasingly doing the right thing by insuring their workers, too many employers are still ignoring their obligations,” Mr. Mclean said.
“Any Queensland business who employs a worker is breaking the law if they don’t have a WorkCover Accident Insurance policy.
“Uninsured employers who lodge WorkCover claims are being held to account. These businesses can be hit with significant financial penalties, including the cost of the claim which can amount to hundreds of thousands of dollars for severe injuries,” Mr. McLean said.
If employers are confused about their obligations to insure their workers against injury or who they need to cover, WorkCover said it was there to help.
“WorkCover is committed to working with and educating Sunshine Coast employers to protect the fairness and sustainability of the workers’ compensation scheme for all Queensland policyholders.
“We regularly conduct on-site visits with employers across Queensland and are continually expanding the range of data and information we can match against insurance policies. Inaccurate reporting of wages affects the entire workers’ compensation scheme through increased premium costs,” Mr. Mclean said.
Sunshine Coast businesses can apply for a workers’ compensation policy online or learn more about their rights and responsibilities by visiting www.worksafe.com.au or by calling WorkCover on 1300 362 128.