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Appeal a review decision on a claims matter - a worker's step-by-step guide

If you are lodging an appeal against a review decision on a claims matter your application must be lodged with the Queensland Industrial Relations Commission (the Industrial Magistrates Court will only accept appeal applications against review decisions on premium matters).

Workers, claimants and employers who are unhappy with a Workers' Compensation Regulator review decision can appeal to the Queensland Industrial Relations Commission (QIRC) within 20 business days of receiving the decision.

The Workers' Compensation Regulator defends the review decision in the Commission. In accordance with section 326 of the Workers' Compensation and Rehabilitation Act 2003 (PDF, 1.99 MB) (the WCRA Act), the Governor in Council has appointed Simon Blackwood, Deputy Director General, Office of Industrial Relations, as the Workers' Compensation Regulator.  The parties to an appeal are:

  • the appellant - the person who files the appeal
  • the respondent - Workers' Compensation Regulator.

If your employer appeals a review decision, you have a right as a worker or claimant to join the court action as a party to the appeal. Tell the Commission if you want to make representations to the Commission during the appeal. You pay the costs of any solicitor or third party that you hire. Contact the Queensland Law Society or the Workers' Compensation Advisory Service (Queensland Council of Unions toll free: 1800 102 166) for more information on how they can help. You don't need to be a member of a union to contact the QCU.

On receipt of the appeal a Workers' Compensation Regulator appeals officer is allocated to manage the case.  You can contact the appeals officer at anytime to ask questions or discuss the case with them.

Step 1: Prepare your written Notice of Appeal

When preparing your Notice of Appeal to the QIRC, use the form located on their website (under Forms - Appeals against Workers' Compensation Regulator Review Decisions). Explain why you are unhappy with the review decision (these are the 'grounds of your appeal'). This may assist in the appeal process

Step 2: File your appeal within 20 business days of receiving the review decision

In person

Queensland Industrial Relations Commission
21st Floor Central Plaza 2
66 Eagle Street
BRISBANE  Qld  4000


Fax to (07) 3221 6074

*post the original if faxing


Queensland Industrial Relations Commission
GPO Box 373
BRISBANE  Qld  4000


Step 3: Send a copy of the Notice of Appeal to the Workers' Compensation Regulator within 10 business days of filing in the Commission.

Workers' Compensation Regulator
Appeals Unit
PO Box 10119
Adelaide Street
BRISBANE  Qld  4000

Step 4: Directions Orders and Preparation for Hearing

The Commission will issue directions for the management of the appeal including the preparation of a statement of facts and contentions. 

More information on this process can be obtained by reading the Workers' Compensation Appeals Guide located on the Commission's website.

Step 5: Attend the hearing

You must prove your case 'on the balance of probabilities' and you will need to call witnesses including yourself, to give evidence to support your appeal. You arrange for your witnesses, including doctors, to give evidence, and pay any costs involved. The parties must exchange copies of any relevant document/s that you may rely on before the hearing at least ten business days prior but this can occur at any time.

There is no jury. The Commissioner will hear both sides of the appeal and decide (either on the day or at a later date) based on the facts and evidence presented as evidence during the hearing.

Step 6: Pay any appeal costs

You may have to pay appeal costs if:

  • you engage a solicitor or a third party to assist you in the appeal
  • your appeal is unsuccessful and the Commission orders appeal costs against you- the Workers' Compensation Regulator's costs will include barrister briefings, calling witnesses and obtaining documents.

Any costs awarded by the Commission will be paid according to Schedule 3 scale "E" Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 1999 and will not cover your entire costs.

Step 7: Appeal to the Industrial Court within 21 days if you're not happy with the Commission decision

Use the form from the Industrial Court of Queensland website.

Note: The decision of the Industrial Court is final.

Last updated
27 June 2016

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