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Lessons for employers: Covill v WorkCover Queensland [2022] QSC 171

September 20, 2022

Covill v WorkCover Queensland [2022] QSC 171 Background Atlas People Pty Ltd, a chef recruitment and labour hire company, employed chefs to work on short and long-term assignments in different parts of Australia. Ms Covill, a chef by trade, was employed by Atlas to first work on assignment in Batemans Bay in New South Wales. On […]

You don’t always have to put in a fresh claim, according to the Federal Court

July 19, 2022

Ellison and Comcare [2022] FCA 95.   Key Points: The Federal Court was asked to decide whether the Administrative Appeals Tribunal had erred in finding that it had no jurisdiction to consider a claim for workers’ compensation for Mr Ellison’s underlying degenerative disease of the spine. The Federal Court found there had been an error […]

AFP officer’s injury found to be a result of reasonable administrative action

July 19, 2022

Snook and Comcare [2022].   Key Points: The Tribunal was asked to consider liability for a psychological condition, claimed to have been sustained in the workplace by an Australian Federal Police Officer. The Tribunal found that the psychological condition did not meet the definition of Injury as it was suffered as a result of reasonable […]

An identifiable physiological change is not necessary for there to be an “ailment”

July 19, 2022

Wuth and Comcare [2022] FCAFC 42.   Key Points:   Ms Wuth appealed a decision of the Tribunal, which found than she had not suffered an injury within the meaning of the SRC Act because there had been no identifiable physiological change evident. The Full Court of the Federal Court stated that it was unnecessary […]

Symptoms of anxiety and stress do not amount to a psychological condition

March 17, 2022

Fittock and Comcare [2022] AATA 72.   Key Points: The Tribunal was asked to make a decision about liability on a claim for an aggravation of a psychological condition suffered by an employee of Services Australia. The employee claimed she experienced stress and anxiety as a result of the conduct of her team leader, after […]

Objection refused! Tribunal issues summons for mental health records

March 17, 2022

Australian Electoral Commission and Comcare [2022] AATA 138.   Key Points: A treating psychologist objected to a summons for him to produce medical records, on the grounds that it would be a breach of privacy and duty of care to his patient. The Tribunal found that privacy considerations and duty of care must give way […]

“But I don’t want to go” – a subjective belief of unlawfulness cannot amount to a reasonable excuse

March 17, 2022

Hanel and Comcare [2022] AATA 261.   Key Points: A subjective belief alone, as to the unlawfulness of a Notice to undergo a medical examination, cannot amount to a reasonable excuse for the purpose of section 57(2) of the SRC Act. A determination made under section 57 of the SRC Act is not included within […]

Ongoing symptoms were due to old Army injury not compensable condition

March 17, 2022

Di Carlo and Linfox Australia (Operations) Pty Ltd [2021] AATA 5086.   Key Points: The Tribunal was asked to consider ongoing liability to pay compensation to a Linfox Australia employee in respect of a left elbow condition. The Tribunal accepted that the employee had suffered a previous left arm injury while serving in the Army […]

Former AFP officer not entitled to compensation for psychological condition sustained in 1987

March 17, 2022

Ascic v Comcare [2021] FCA 1498.   Key Points: The Federal Court was required to consider whether the Tribunal erred in finding that an Australian Federal Police Officer was not entitled to compensation for permanent impairment for a psychological condition. The Federal Court applied Kostas v HIA Insurance Services Pty Ltd t/as Home Owners Warranty […]

Tribunal dismisses claims due to “abuse of process”

December 14, 2021

NXPQ and Comcare [2021] AATA 4094.   Key Points: The Tribunal was asked to dismiss two applications on the basis that they were made on substantially the same facts as a claim which had already previously been decided by the Tribunal. The Tribunal found in favour of Comcare and dismissed both applications on the basis […]