Stronger OHS Penalties, More Compo for Workers

21 September 2017

The Andrews Labor Government is keeping Victorians safe at work and improving compensation for those who are injured.

The WorkSafe Legislation Amendment Act 2017 was passed by Parliament today and strengthens the compliance and enforcement tools that WorkSafe can use to prosecute offenders as well as deter offending.

The changes give WorkSafe more time to prosecute serious offences and increases penalties for serious breaches of the OHS Act.

Duty holders who fail to notify WorkSafe of an incident, or don’t preserve a site after a serious incident will now face up to $38,000 in fines for individuals and up to $190,000 for body corporates if they break the law.

WorkSafe will also get new powers to prosecute where an offender breaches an enforceable undertaking and new penalties can be applied by the courts where an enforceable undertaking is breached.

The Government has also introduced more compensation entitlements of up to $5000 for travel and accommodation to allow family members to travel to visit an injured worker in hospital, or to attend a funeral service.

This important measure will further support families who have had a loved one injured at work, or who are grieving after the loss of a loved one in a workplace accident.

The Labor Government is serious about supporting WorkSafe to protect Victorian workers, with the recruitment of WorkSafe inspectors up by almost 10 per cent since December 2014.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Finance Robin Scott

“Injuries at work remain all too common – that’s why we’re strengthening WorkSafe’s ability to enforce OHS laws and support injured workers and their families.”

“It’s our priority to protect the health and safety of all Victorian workers and supporting them if they get injured because safety always comes first.”

Reviewed 19 August 2020

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