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Your questions answered: Which insurance covers independent consultants?

By Portner Press on August 6th, 2018
  1. Performance Management
  2. Workers' Compensation

 

Q
We are considering engaging an independent consultant on a fixed-term contract. Do we have to pay WorkCover, or is it covered by their professional indemnity insurance? We are in Victoria.

 

A
The Workplace Rehabilitation and Compensation Act (Vic) has an extended definition of ‘worker’ that can cover independent contractors.

If your consultant truly is an independent contractor, they will be a ‘deemed worker’ and covered by the WorkCover scheme if they provide 80% of their labour to you, and at least 80% of their gross income is derived from work done for you.

If they are a deemed worker, then you should have a workers’ compensation policy. In the event that an employee or deemed worker is injured, the workers’ compensation scheme is a no-fault scheme and you don’t pay, your insurer does.

Subscribers to the Employment Law Practical Handbook also get free access to the Helpdesk, manned by the employment lawyers at Holding Redlich. Ask a question and get a response in 72 hours – straight to your inbox.

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