icare has identified an issue with historical payment practises which may have led to underpayments and overpayments to some Dust Diseases Care participants. These practises pre-date icare and reflect decades-old legal interpretations of the 1942 and 1987 NSW Workers Compensation Acts.
We’re working to identify and address these issues as quickly as possible to ensure we deliver the support required to the injured people we serve.
icare first received legal advice in May 2020 to clarify the Dust Diseases Care legal interpretation issue when preparing for an internal system change. icare then sought a second opinion, with the final legal advice received in November 2020. In early December 2020 the icare Board was notified of the issue.
The State Insurance Regulatory Authority, other relevant government agencies and the Treasurer were also notified of the matter in December 2020 and PwC was then engaged in January this year to provide advice on any potential remediation options.
Having developed a proposed approach with PwC, icare is now seeking final assurance from an independent third party to ensure the best outcome for participants. This work will be undertaken by experts in wage remediation matters. As soon as that advice is finalised, remediation will immediately commence.
This issue does not impact everyone in the scheme now or in the past, and nor do Dust Diseases Care participants need to do anything at this stage. This is because icare will contact every person or estate that is impacted. There are no changes to existing arrangements at this time.
A new Chair and CEO were appointed to icare in 2020, with a remit to undertake the reform required to support better outcomes for injured workers and employers in NSW. As this work continues across icare, it is likely other matters will be identified which require remediation, and they too, will be expeditiously actioned.