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This article appeared in the Australian Work Health and Safety Tracker
 
Public consultation on proposed Industrial Court
 

Comments are being sought on an exposure draft of a Bill proposing to establish a specialised court that would hear and decide industrial and work health and safety issues.

The exposure draft of the Magistrates Court (Industrial Proceedings) Amendment Bill 2013 (ACT) was released for public comment on 7 May 2013.

In addition to dealing with all workers compensation claims and industrial civil claims up to $250,000, the Industrial Court would be given jurisdiction to hear industrial civil compensation claims over $250,000. The latter is currently dealt with by the ACT Supreme Court.

“The Government is proposing that the Childrens Court model be adopted for the new Industrial Court, as it has the advantage of requiring a specific appointment as an Industrial Magistrate, which would lead to specialisation in the area of industrial workplace accidents”, Attorney–General Simon Corbell said when tabling the exposure draft in the Legislative Assembly.

“The legislation would bring the ACT into line with all other Australian jurisdictions, except Tasmania, that already have specialist arrangements within their Magistrates Courts to hear and decide issues relating to workplace health and safety, including workplace accidents and deaths”, Mr Corbell said.

Establishment of the proposed Industrial Court would implement a recommendation of the Getting Home Safely report.

Submissions on the exposure draft close on 26 May 2013.

The exposure draft can be viewed here.

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