The Workers Compensation Legislation Amendment (Firefighters) Act 2018 (NSW) (‘the Act’) was passed by both houses of the NSW Parliament on 22 November 2018 and was assented on November 28 as Act 93 of 2018. The Act amends certain legislation to establish presumptive rights to workers compensation for firefighters in certain situations.
The Act amends the Workers Compensation Act 1987 (NSW) and the Workers Compensation (Bush Fire, Emergency and Rescue Services) Act 1987 (NSW). These amendments have the objective of inserting presumptive rights to workers compensation for eligible firefighters in respect of certain cancers. The effect of the provisions will also insert the presumption that the cancer is contracted in the course of firefighting activities such as training or instruction.
The amendments to the Workers Compensation (Bush Fire, Emergency and Rescue Services) Act 1987 (NSW) have the effect of inserting the presumption that the cancer is presumed to be contracted in the course of fighting a bush fire. In addition to these amendments, provisions relating to the time limit for making a compensation claim will be inserted as a result of this Act.
In his second reading speech in the Legislative Assembly, Mr Victor Dominello, Minister for Finance, Services and Property, stated that the Bill was designed to simplify the process of claiming compensation for firefighters with certain cancers by ensuring a presumptive right to compensation.
He noted that the Bill was similar to other presumptive legislation in other Australian states and internationally, stating:
On the list of specified cancers and the definition of ‘eligible firefighter’, Mr Dominello said:
Rural Fire Service (RFS) deputy commissioner Rob Rogers wasas having supported the legislation. Fire and Rescue NSW (FRNSW) deputy commissioner Mal Conellan was :
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Workers Compensation Legislation Amendment (Firefighters) Act 2018 (NSW), Bill, second reading speech and explanatory notes availabe from TimeBase's LawOne service.
Nick Bielby, ‘,’ The Newcastle Herald, 24 October 2018.
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