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44.1.2 Implications of being a former employee
Division 3 of Part X of the SRC Act (ss 131 - 137), which sets out transitional and savings provisions, provides incapacity compensation benefits for former employees which are generally more favourable than the incapacity benefits available to current employees. In particular, former employees continue to receive weekly incapacity compensation after Age Pension age, a benefit which is not available to current employees because of the age bar in s 23(1) in Part II of the Act.
Note, however, that s 134 reduces the amount of compensation payable to former employees, when the former employee turns Age Pension age, by 5% for each year since the commencement of the Act. This formula ensures that, after 2008, former employees will not receive compensation once they turn Age Pension age, and will be in the same position as those who were injured after 1 December 1988. Former employees who turn Age Pension age before 2008 will continue to receive the appropriate reduced rate of compensation until their incapacity ceases or until their death.
A new s 134(2), which was inserted into the SRC Act by the Industrial Relations and other Legislation Amendment Act 1995 with effect from 15 January 1996, makes it clear that the reduced rate of weekly compensation paid under s 134 remains frozen. Neither s 8 (which provides for calculation and indexation of normal weekly earnings) nor s 13 (which provides for calculation and indexation of certain compensation benefits in accordance with the consumer price index) apply to the reduced amount of compensation calculated in accordance with s 134(1).