Injured workers will be eligible for two new benefits that provide further support for them to return to work.
A $1000 new employment assistance benefit is available to all injured workers who return to work with a new employer. This is set to benefit 11,500 current claimants and can be used for expenses such as child care, clothes, transport and tools.
Up to $8000 is available under the education or training assistance benefit for only those workers with 20 per cent impairment who have been receiving benefits for 78 weeks or more. This is set to benefit 4000 current claimants and can be spent on a training or education course with a registered training organisation or a registered higher education provider.
“The NSW Government is committed to protecting injured workers, and delivering support services that empower them to return to work,” Minister for Innovation and Better Regulation Victor Dominello said.
“Many injured workers want to return to work but find it challenging for a range of reasons. These new benefits provide them with additional assistance that will help address some of the barriers to re-entering the workforce.”
Last year the NSW Government confirmed that a 2014 review of the NSW workers compensation scheme identified the need to address barriers to return to work, and to provide fair and equitable access to benefits and support, particularly for workers with high needs.
In August 2015, the government announced a $1 billion reform package of enhanced benefits for injured workers that included additional return to work support.
Information on the new benefits is available at www.insurancereforms.nsw.gov.au