Shine Lawyers Main Logo

Workers’ compensation stress claims

Workers' compensation

Work can impact your mental health, leading to a serious psychological injury such as depression, PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder), adjustment disorder, or anxiety. Workplace stress is a common part of work life for many people.  If your work stress causes psychological injury, you may be able to make a workers’ compensation stress claim. 

Check if you have a claim with our simple, free online tool.

I only have a landline

What we will ask: 

  • Details about the accident and injuries that have happened to you or your loved one 

  • Basic personal information that is relevant and necessary for your claim

What happens next:  

  • Either book a no obligation appointment with a compensation law expert right away or,    

  • Speak with our team about your options

What is a workers compensation stress claim? 

According to Safe Work Australia, claims for serious mental health conditions have increased 43.3% between 2012 and 2022. Workplace mental health conditions lead to significantly more time off work and higher compensation payments compared to physical injuries and illness.  

In 2020-2021 for example, the median: 

  • Time lost from mental health condition claims were 34.2 working weeks (compared to an average of 8 weeks lost across all claims) 

  • Compensation paid for mental health condition claims ($58,615) were around four times the median compensation paid across all claims ($15,743) 

If workplace stress is severe it can result in a psychological injury, and you could be eligible to make a workers’ compensation stress claim. If you’ve been wondering, can I sue my employer for stress and anxiety in Australia, your psychological injury must have: 

  • Been caused or aggravated by your work (and not by your personal circumstances such as financial, relationship or health concerns) 

  • An easily identifiable source 

  • Have a profound impact on your life 

What are some common types of workers’ compensation stress claims? 

Workers’ compensation stress or anxiety claims can vary depending on the situation, however the most common include:  

  • Work pressures such as job demands, low job control, poor support and lack of role clarity 

  • Workplace bullying or harassment (including sexual harassment

  • Workplace conflict such as with a colleague or your manager 

  • Occupational violence or trauma such as experienced by a first responder  

How to make a workers’ compensation stress claim

Generally speaking, there are some vital factors to making a workers compensation stress claim: 

  • the source of the work stress is easily identifiable; and 

  • the stress has had a profound impact on your life. 

In cases where the conduct that caused the stress is more subtle, it can be difficult to establish a psychological injuries claim. It really depends on the facts of your situation and the laws governing the Australian state where the stress injury occurred. 

Shine Lawyers are work injury experts and can help you to understand your entitlements and rights to making a workers compensation stress claim. 

How to make a workers’ compensation claim 

Subject to the workers’ compensation laws in your state, to make a workers’ compensation stress claim, you’ll need to show: 

  • You are a worker 

  • You have a psychological injury 

  • Your work is the cause of, significant contributing factor to or reason for aggravation of your injury 

  • Evidence to support that your injuries arose beyond what would be considered reasonable management action in connection with your employment, taken in a reasonable way by your employer 

Examples of what evidence might be helpful include: 

  • Your employer’s (or a manager’s) micromanagement of your work 

  • High workloads 

  • Short turnaround time frames to complete work 

  • Long work hours, beyond the scope of your employment terms 

A good indicator of whether you have a psychological injury and are eligible to seek stress at work compensation, is that you’re receiving treatment. If you’re not receiving treatment, or if the conduct causing your stress is hard to identify.

It can be difficult to establish your eligibility to claim. It depends on your circumstances and the workers’ compensation laws in your state.   

Shine Lawyers are work injury experts and can help you to understand your circumstances, entitlements and rights to making a workers' compensation stress claim.  

How to claim stress related workers’ compensation  

Seeking medical assessment and help for your workplace stress is important. See a medical or mental health professional as soon as possible and ask them for a written assessment. Without this, it can be difficult to get the treatment and help you need, and may impact your claim for workers’ compensation.  

How much stress related workers' compensation are you entitled to? 

The amount of workers’ compensation you can claim depends on the circumstances of your workplace stress. Consulting a workers’ compensation lawyer is important because:  

  • They can listen to understand your situation and advise on your possible rights and entitlements to compensation  

  • Your lawyer will be aware of the strict time limits applicable in your state or territory for making a workers’ compensation stress claim 

 It’s also important that you seek legal advice before accepting any lump-sum payment from your employer’s workers’ compensation insurer.  

Superannuation and disability Insurance 

If you’re unable to work due to injury or illness you might be entitled to claim benefits through your superannuation or other insurance policies.  Shine Lawyers’ workers’ compensation lawyers can make an obligation-free analysis of your situation to determine your rights and ability to make a claim.  

Learn more about Superannuation and Disability Insurance Claims

How Shine can help with your workers' compensation claim

We have helped thousands of Australians right wrong and access more than $1 billion in entitlements and compensation through our expert services.  

95% of the cases we represent are settled without the stress of going to court. 

We offer access to affordable legal advice including on a No Win, No Fee* basis and an obligation free initial consultation so you can understand your rights and know where you stand.  

*Conditions apply  

We are ready to take action to get you access to compensation, protect your future and right wrong.  Find out more today:

Workers’ compensation stress claim FAQs

Can I represent myself, or do I need a workers’ compensation lawyer?

It’s possible to legally represent yourself when making a workers’ compensation stress claim however, doing so successfully will likely require a thorough understanding of the law, your legal rights and entitlements, and a commitment to actively pursue the case to move it forward.  

Without an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer in your corner, it can be difficult to identify and highlight the strengths of your case. You then may not receive the compensation you're entitled to. A lawyer could also help you maximise your lump sum entitlements. 

Why trust Shine to be my workers’ compensation lawyers? 

At Shine Lawyers, we put your first. We’ve been standing up for the rights of everyday Australians for over 45 years. As one of Australia’s largest litigation law firms, we are here to help you get the justice you deserve.  

Our empathy, understanding and expertise is why we’re ahead of the pack. We’ll stand with you and guide you through every step of the way.

Where are Shine workers’ compensation lawyers located? 

With more than 40 branches across Australia and 1000+ team members, location is no barrier when it comes to accessing Shine Lawyers legal advice and support.  

If you’d like to speak to our workers’ compensation team in person, you can see our full list of locations here.  

If you aren't able to find a location near you, we can easily arrange an obligation-free virtual appointment. No matter where you are located, we will always provide the same, expert advice and manage your claim with the same level of quality and commitment. 

How is compensation calculated for workers’ compensation stress claims?

Depending on the nature of your stress claim, in most instances a monetary value is placed on the gap between your predicted life path before the injury and your actual life path since the injury. In order for compensation to be awarded in stress claims, your legal team usually have to demonstrate you are suffering from a clinical medical condition, which is classified as an ‘injury’.

Do you have a claim?  

We’re here to make the claims process as simple and stress-free as possible.

Back to top


Shine Lawyers acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of the Country throughout Australia and their connections to land, waterways and community. We pay our respects to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures; and to Elders past, present and emerging.

Shine Lawyers Pty Ltd | ABN 86 134 702 757

Copyright 2024 Shine Lawyers. All Rights Reserved