Do I Need a Lawyer?
It is recommended that anyone who has been diagnosed with silicosis should seek independent legal advice regarding their particular circumstances and their potential entitlements.
Types of Compensation Claims
There are generally two types of claims available in Australia for conditions like silicosis – either a workers’ compensation claim or a damages claim. Workers’ compensation schemes are a no fault claim process. An injured worker simply needs to establish that they have been diagnosed with a work-related condition that is causing impairment to recover compensation. A claim for damages however involves establishing negligence of the other party. Deciding to pursue a damages claim involves a legal assessment which should be discussed with a lawyer.
Are There Time Limits for Bringing a Claim for Silicosis?
Yes, in Queensland a person needs to lodge a claim for workers’ compensation benefits with WorkCover Queensland within six months of diagnosis.
What Can I Claim For?
In Queensland, claims for compensation for silicosis are either brought as a workers’ compensation claim with WorkCover Queensland or a claim for damages.
Claims for damages can be made up of the following components:
• Pain and suffering
• Loss of life expectancy
• Past and future out-of-pocket expenses
• Past economic loss and lost superannuation
• Future lost earning capacity and future lost superannuation
• Personal care and domestic assistance
• Paid personal care and domestic assistance
• Inability to provide care to a third party
• Legal costs (depending on the type of claim)