This interview can occur at any time during the life of a claim.
Purpose of worker interview
A worker interview A worker who has an incapacity for work, must as required by the Agent, participate in an interview with the representative of the Agent for the purpose of enhancing the worker's opportunities to RTW. is conducted to optimise the worker’s opportunities to return to work.
- set RTW Return to Work goals and expectations
- clarify the worker’s RTW rights and obligations
- explain claims management activities for OES Original Employer Services and NES New Employer Services
- clarify claims management activities as the worker approaches a time when their entitlement to weekly payments will come to an end. This includes the worker approaching retirement age or 104/130 weeks of weekly payments.
Agent arranges a worker interview
Agents must provide workers with a minimum of 14 days written notice of an interview time and place. An earlier time can be arranged by mutual consent over the phone.
Regardless of the method of arrangement, the Agent must outline the following points in writing to the worker:
- the purpose of the interview
- the time and place of the interview
- that the worker must participate in an interview and that they have the right to be accompanied by a support person
- request that if the worker wants to have another person such as a union representative, friend or family member accompany them to the interview, that they advise the Agent before the interview date.
The support person is to play a supportive role rather than speak on behalf of the worker.
Parties who accompany a worker to a worker interview cannot seek payment for attending.
OR provider at worker interview
An OR Occupational Rehabilitation provider is not required to participate in a worker interview. An OR provider who attends a worker interview cannot seek payment for attending the interview.
The worker interview is conducted face-to-face with the worker where possible.
The worker interview may be arranged at any location suitable for both parties. It may be at the Agent, THP Treating Health Practitioner or provider’s office or the worker’s place of employment. Ideally, the interview location should be arranged by mutual agreement.
Interviews conducted by telephone
If it is not practical for the worker to attend a worker interview in person the Agent may conduct the interview by telephone. This may occur if the worker:
- is based in a regional location and the Agent has no regional office
- has mobility issues that prevent them from attending the interview in person.
If the worker chooses to have a support person present, a telephone interview should only be conducted if the worker has access to a telephone with speaker functionality to allow the worker’s support person to participate.
Worker’s travel costs for attending a worker interview
A worker may seek reimbursement of reasonable travel costs to attend a worker interview.
Agreed actions following an interview
Actions to be taken after the worker interview are documented by the Agent. The Agent nominates who will be responsible for each action and provides a copy to the worker in writing within five working days of the interview using the ‘Interview Outcome Letter – Worker’ template.
OES or NES services approved following an interview
If the worker interview was conducted to help determine whether the worker would benefit from OES or NES, the Agent should advise the worker of their decision within five working days of the worker interview.
Worker interview after OES or NES services have commenced
An Agent may also arrange a worker interview with the worker during OES or NES if there is concern that the worker is having difficulties returning to work or is not participating in the services.