Suitable duties

If your injury prevents you from returning to your pre-injury job, but you have some capacity to return to work, your doctor may advise that you can return to work and undertake suitable alternative duties.

Your claims agent or return to work coordinator - in consultation with you, your doctor and your employer - should look for suitable alternative duties in your workplace and prepare a recovery and return to work plan to support this.

Your employer is required to make all reasonable efforts to identify suitable alternative duties you can perform in the workplace, and provide the suitable alternative duties described in your recovery and return to work plan.

You are expected to actively participate in return to work planning and take all reasonable steps to get back to work as soon as possible.

If you have questions about returning to work with your current employer, please contact your mobile claims manager in the first instance or call 13 18 55.


Are you and your employer unsure if there are any duties you can do while you’re recovering?

If this is the case, your claims agent can arrange for a medical expert to meet with you and your employer at your worksite to complete a worksite assessment. This assessment looks at all of the jobs completed onsite. The medical expert will be able to identify potential safe duties you might be able to perform while you’re recovering.

What happens when suitable duties are identified?

If you, your employer, and or an external provider has found duties you believe you’re able to do while you’re still recovering, these should be discussed and signed off by your treating doctor before you commence them.

You could simply book an appointment with your treating doctor and let them know the duties you and your employer feel you can do and your treating doctor will decide if you’re medically fit to perform these duties. Your treating doctor should provide you with a Work Capacity Certificate that will need to be given to your employer and your claims agent. If your doctor needs more information, speak to your claims agent about how this can be arranged.

What is work placement?

Your claims agent may be able to arrange a work placement for you to temporarily work with a host employer. For times when your employer is unable to provide you with any suitable duties but you still have some capacity to work, this may be a good option for you.

A work placement may be able to offer you:

  • on the job training where you’re placed in a realistic work environment to refresh or update existing skills or to acquire new skills in readiness for suitable employment, or
  • training or retraining where a worker is undertaking an approved course, or
  • a work trial with the view to obtaining employment.

How can a work placement be found?

There are many ways a work placement can be found. Your claims agent may request the service of a rehabilitation provider to link you to host employers that may have suitable duties you could perform. Another option is if you know of an employer who is looking for someone to do some work that you feel is within your current capacity, you just need to speak to your claims agent and they can help to arrange a work placement.

It’s important to be aware that you are not considered an employee of the host business.

I’m not getting better, what do I do?

Firstly, speak with your doctor and talk to them about why you feel you’re not improving. You could even ask if your mobile claims manager would like to attend this medical appointment.