Lawyers approved by the IRO (Approved Lawyers) may apply for grants of funding to provide legal advice and assistance to injured eligible workers pursuing workers compensation entitlements. A grant is required for a Lawyer to claim payment of legal costs (professional fees and disbursements) from the IRO.
Purpose of funding
The purpose of ILARS funding is to ensure that injured workers are able to:
- Obtain legal advice about their rights and entitlements under the workers compensation legislation
- Access legal assistance to assert their rights and entitlements under the workers compensation legislation and to attempt resolution of disagreements or disputes
- Have their claim determined in the Personal Injury Commission where a dispute is unable to be resolved by agreement or early dispute resolution processes
- Access legal representation to pursue or defend appeals both within the Commission and to higher courts where appropriate
Procedures for administering grants of funding
Approved Lawyers are referred to the ILARS Funding Guidelines which provide comprehensive guidance and explanatory material with respect to all aspects of grants of funding. Approved Lawyers are expected to be familiar with these Guidelines.
An application for a grant of funding should be made once an Approved Lawyer has received instructions from an injured eligible injured worker to advise in relation to their workers compensation rights and entitlements or act in relation to a claim for compensation or decision of an insurer.
A grant is sought by completing the ILARS Grant Application Form or the ILARS Grant Application Form – Industrial Deafness (Hearing Loss).
That application, which is lodged by email, is then assessed by an ILARS team member. Wherever possible grants will be approved or declined within five working days of receipt of the Application Form. If the application is declined, ILARS will provide information about seeking a review of the decision.
What does the grant of funding cover?
Grants of funding cover professional fees, counsel’s fees, medical report fees and the cost of other disbursements and incidental expenses reasonably necessary to investigate a claim or pursue a dispute about a claim.
Referral to the IRO Solutions Group
Some grant applications may be referred to the Solutions Group if it appears the dispute is capable of early or simple resolution. The IRO is focused on resolving disputes quickly, fairly and cost effectively and we encourage Approved Lawyers to adopt the same practical approach.
Grant amounts are paid on the basis of the outcomes achieved. Legal costs will be paid upon provision of a compliant Tax Invoice in accordance ILARS Tax Invoice Guide.