Bradford Legal have dedicated solicitors with experience in dealing with stress-related leave claims, which are on the rise nationally. Stress is a serious health condition that is sometimes not considered serious by employers but it can, in some cases, develop into more serious mental health/mental illness conditions such as depression and anxiety. If stress from your job is affecting your personal health, you may be eligible to take a paid Workers’ Compensation Stress Leave.
Stress can severely impact your ability to work effectively, often leaving you feeling overwhelmed and unable to complete even the simplest of tasks. This can lead to poor performance in the workplace, which adds even more pressure to your already stressed state of mind. Over time, prolonged stress at work can leave you feeling like taking leave away from work is the only way to feel yourself again and relieve the personal stress symptoms you are feeling.
Taking stress leave can be sensitive because many people do not feel comfortable talking to their employers about their mental health. Every employer should take mental illness very seriously, as they should with any health issue that may arise with employees working at their company. Bradford Legal can help you have this conversation and contact your employer for you.
If you’re still unsure about what stress leave is, take a look at our FAQ section below to learn more, or get in touch with Bradford Legal today so we can help you with your workers compensation stress leave claim.
What is Work-Related Mental Stress?
Work-related mental stress is loosely described as any adverse reaction suffered by an employee when the demands of the workplace are beyond the worker’s capabilities or are more than the worker can comfortably manage. Chronic stress has been found to contribute to numerous physical and mental states of disease, including mental health conditions.
A Workers’ Compensation stress leave can be one of the more expensive Workers’ Compensation claims because it usually involves a long period of claim time or absence from the job. Mental stress is now categorised as any claim where the employee suffered a physical or mental illness due to work-related stress.
Mental stress is subdivided into its causes, such as the following:
Work Pressure: This covers conditions resulting from work responsibilities, deadlines, workloads, workplace promotion or performance issues, interpersonal conflicts or organisational restructure.
Workplace Violence: Including but not limited to: being a victim of or witness to assault, robbery or other violent events.
Traumatic Event: Suffering or witnessing a traumatic event such as a fatal accident at the workplace.
Suicide: Any suicide or attempted suicide, regardless of outcome or cause.
Harassment and Bullying: This covers harassment for any reason, including sexual and racial, assault, abuse and threats at your place of employment from other employees.
Other Factors: This is a catchall category that includes dietary deficiencies, conditions and diseases such as bulimia or anorexia.
Is stress leave sick leave?
If you are stressed at work and feel like your personal health is deteriorating as a result of this stress and anxiety at work, you could be eligible for paid stress leave. The Fair Work Ombudsman of Australia determines that stress related illness can be taken as sick leave and is treated as per normal sick leave at your company, therefore they should be treated the same.
If you’re experiencing work stress at your place of employment and you’re unsure of your rights with your employer, Bradford Legal can support you. We’ll strive to help you understand more about your situation and how you can take paid/unpaid sick leave for workplace stress.
Can an employee take stress leave?
If an employee is experiencing stress at their place of employment, they may be eligible to take paid stress leave. Each company has a different policy, so employees need to check their personal rights especially when determining how many days can be taken as paid leave and how many can be taken as unpaid leave. However, as per guidelines set out by The Fair Work Ombudsman of Australia, stress is considered an illness.
Can employees sue their employer for stress and anxiety?
If employees feel like their stress at their place of employment, mental health and well being have not been taken seriously during their employment by their company, they have the right to claim workers compensation. Your particular situation will determine if you have the right to claim compensation and your company has the right to fully investigate each employees individual circumstances and health.
Bradford Legal can help support you in understanding your personal rights, work with you to ensure your health condition does not deteriorate and ensure you receive any compensation you may be entitled to. Stress leave should be taken very seriously by both employer and employees and therefore it’s important you take the right steps to understand what your rights are. We work with you to ensure you are treated fairly and your mental health is of utmost importance to us.
Get in touch with us today at Bradford Legal to find out more information or start your workers compensation stress leave claim.