If you are receiving workers compensation benefits, eventually WorkCover or the self-insurer will cut those benefits or close the claim. If you have not been provided with a Notice of Assessment and Lump Sum Offer, at that stage you can request that WorkCover or the self-insurer issue you with a Notice of Assessment.
The Notice of Assessment sets out your injuries from the workplace accident and provides a percentage permanent impairment or Work Related Impairment (WRI). The Notice of Assessment may also contain a Lump Sum Offer of money to finalise your workers’ compensation claim. The Lump Sum Offer is calculated by WorkCover or the self-insurer on a set calculation under law.
It is very important at that stage to seek legal advice, because accepting a lump sum offer could lead to you losing all your legal rights to a common law workers compensation claim.
Because the Lump Sum Offer is worked out on a set calculation, it does not take into account your personal circumstances, e.g. how the injury may affect you in the future, whether the injury will affect your ability to work and earn a living. It is for this reason that you should get legal advice if you are given a Notice of Assessment and Lump Sum Offer.
In the Notice of Assessment you can also dispute the percentage permanent impairment that your injury is assessed at. Again, it is best to get legal advice about this step as it has a number of consequences, there are other options and it disputing the impairment assessment is not always the best option.
Once the Notice of Assessment is issued, you will have 20 business days to make a decision about the Lump Sum Offer. After that time, your WorkCover benefits will be cut off. In some cases, the WorkCover benefits may be cut off even before the Notice of Assessment has issued.