King & Wood Mallesons

Asia-Pacific 100 position: 3

Proposed amendments to the Workers’ Compensation and Injury Management Act

Western Australia’s workers’ compensation scheme commenced operation in 1981. The Workers’ Compensation and Injury Management Act 1981, which established that the scheme has been amended on a piecemeal basis many times since its introduction, resulting in a complex and highly prescriptive statute, which is difficult to understand and apply.

Efforts to address these concerns began in 2009 when the government approved a two-stage review of the act and has been partially achieved with amendments made in 2011.

The focus of the second stage of the review is to address inconsistencies, improve the language and structure of the act and the administration and decision-making processes. The review will not involve a broad-ranging examination of benefits and entitlements, or other fundamental aspects of the design of the scheme, which have in the main been operating well. What has been needed for some time is a more ‘flexible, responsive and modern’ workers’ compensation and injury management regime…

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