Workers compensation in Queensland

In Queensland the following tests are used to determine if a contractor will be classed as a ‘worker’ and therefore workers compensation obligations apply.

Test one

Contractors are taken to be ‘workers’ unless they meet all three of the following criteria:

  • the contractor is paid to achieve a specified result or outcome; and
  • the contractor provides all of the plant, tools and equipment needed for the job; and
  • the contractor is liable under the contract to rectify defects.
Test two

If the contractor has a ‘personal services determination’ under the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997 they will not be regarded as a ‘worker’ even if they do not meet all three criteria in test one.

Test three

If a contractor does not fall within the definitions at tests one and two, the contractor will still be classed as a ‘worker’ if the following apply:

  • the work is not part of a trade or business carried on by the contractor individually or by partnership; and
  • the contractor does not subcontract the work; or
  • the contractor does not employ a worker; or
  • the contractor employs a worker but performs some of the work personally.

Note: The following people are specifically excluded and will not be classed as ‘workers’ in Queensland:

  • company directors who work as an employee of the company;
  • trustees of a trust who work as an employee of a trust; and
  • partners who work as an employee of a partnership.

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Sharefarmers in Queensland

In Queensland, sharefarmers are classed as ‘workers’ under workers compensation laws if both of the following apply:

  • they do not provide and use farm machinery; and
  • they are not entitled to more than one-third of the proceeds under the share farming agreement.

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