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Work Health and Safety Defence

Work Health and Safety Defence

A prosecution under the Work Health and Safety Act 2011 is essentially a quasi-criminal matter. It is not an offence which would be prosecuted by the police, but could be prosecuted by the WorkCover Authority NSW, and if convicted of such an offence that conviction will be registered as a prior offence with WorkCover NSW and remain on their record forever.

WHS offences are a niche area of law and our WHS lawyers can assist any person facing such charges. Our experienced WHS solicitors understand that facing such charges can be daunting. You have spent years and plenty of hard work building up your business and although you’ve worked hard to make sure all the correct safety procedures are in place, something has gone wrong and suddenly you are facing a large fine and possibly bankruptcy.
A prosecution under the Work Health and Safety Act 2011 (WHS Offence) is essentially a quasi-criminal matter.
It is not an offence which would be prosecuted by the police, but it could be prosecuted by the WorkCover Authority NSW, and if convicted of such an offence that conviction will be registered as a prior conviction with WorkCover NSW and remain on their record forever.
If you were to ever find yourself again prosecuted by WorkCover NSW you would find that any penalty following a conviction may be significantly higher. Or it may be less likely that WorkCover NSW would consider entering into any alternative agreements with you to avoid prosecution such as an enforceable undertaking.
WHS prosecutions are brought under the Work Health and Safety Act 2011. They are almost always brought under section 32 of that Act for a breach of section 19 (in the case of a company), or a breach of section 27 (where an officer of the company, such as director, failed to act with due diligence to ensure the company complied with its obligations under section 19).
With previous experience working on WorkCover prosecutions our WHS lawyers know how matters are prosecuted. We know what to look for and we know how cases proceed. 
Our WHS lawyers can advise you on law and procedure and judicial opinion on previous WorkCover prosecutions.
Our experienced WHS lawyers can also assist and advise you in respect of proposals for enforceable undertakings, which could, if accepted, act as an alternative to prosecution.
Unfortunately, due to the nature of WorkCover prosecutions and the varying size of prosecution evidence which could be served on us we are unable to offer a standard fixed fee for such matters, however, once the evidence is served we would be happy to discuss a fixed fee option with you.