Under the Queensland Workers' Compensation Scheme, if an injured worker is unhappy with a Regulator review decision they can appeal to the Queensland Industrial Relations Commission (QIRC) within 20 business days of receiving the review decision.
If an appeal against a review decision is lodged, the Regulator may defend their review decision. Parties to an appeal are:
- the appellant—the person who files the appeal
- the respondent— the regulator
Before deciding to appeal a regulator review decision, the injured worker should contact their union or seek legal advice to discuss the prospects of an appeal, keeping in mind a Notice to Appeal must be lodged within 20 business days of receiving the review decision.
In an appeal an injured worker may have to pay costs if:
- they have engaged a solicitor or a third party to assist in the appeal
- the injured worker’s appeal is unsuccessful and the Commission orders appeal costs against the injured worker. If the Regulator is defending their decision, the Regulator’s costs will include barrister briefings, calling witnesses and obtaining documents.
An employer also has the right to appeal a review decision made by the Regulator. In those circumstances the employer would be the appellant and the injured worker can join the respondent, the Workers' Compensation Regulator, as a party to the appeal.
Some insurer decisions are non-reviewable and can be appealed in the Industrial Magistrates Court.
Before deciding to proceed with appealing a Regulator review decision or an insure's non-reviewable decision, the injured worker should contact their union or seek legal advice to discuss the prospects of an appeal.