Subject: Lodgement of MRCA Claims and Other Documents at Places and in the Manner Approved Under Section 323


The purpose of this instruction is to clarify the legal requirements for lodging claims and other documents under the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act (MRCA).


Entitlement to benefits under the MRCA requires:

  • a claim in respect of the accepted injury, disease or death, to have been made, under section 319, by or on behalf of the person seeking benefits; and
  • Commission to have accepted liability for a person's injury, disease or death.

What constitutes the making of a hard copy claim?

Under sub-section 323(2) of the MRCA, a claim, other than a claim lodged electronically, is made once it is:

  • received at a place approved by Commission; or
  • delivered to a person approved by Commission.

The same applies to the lodgment of other documents under the MRCA.

Until the documents are received at or delivered to a place or person approved by Commission, they have not been lodged.

What constitutes the making of a claim that is lodged electronically?

Under subsections 323(3) and (4) of the MRCA, a claim that has been lodged electronically is made once it is transmitted in a manner and to an electronic address approved by Commission.

The same applies to the lodgment of other documents transmitted electronically under the MRCA.

Until such claims are received in a manner and at an address so approved, they have not been lodged.

What manner of transmission has been approved by Commission?

With the exception of documents sent by facsimile, DVA does not have the systems in place to protect information transmitted electronically.  Therefore, the MRCC has only approved the electronic lodgment of claims and other documents by facsimile.

What electronic addresses have been approved by Commission?

The following facsimile numbers have been approved by the Commission for the lodgment of claims and other documents by facsimile:

South Australia - 08 8290 0498

New South Wales - (02) 9213 7930

Western Australia - 08 9366 8570

Victoria - 03 9284 6431

Queensland - 07 3223 8425

Townsville - (07) 47223300

Darwin - (08) 8945 0384

ACT - (02) 6289 1195

Tasmania - (03) 6221 6742

What is the significance of the date of lodgment for MRCA claims?

Whilst the commencement of most MRCA benefits is not dependent on the date a claim is lodged, in some permanent impairment cases that date can be critical.

For example, under subsection 77(2), weekly permanent impairment payments are paid from the date on which a person's impairment stabilises and is, in Commission's opinion, likely to continue indefinitely, or the date of the person's claim for liability, whichever is the later.

Instrument made under section 323

For the purposes of subsection 323(2) the MRCC has signed the following instruments:

  • MRCA Instrument number 8: Approval of Places within Australia for the purposes of subsection 323(2) of the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2004; and
  • MRCA Instrument number11: Approval of Persons for the purposes of subsection 323(2) of the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2004.

MRCA instrument number 8 – approval of places

The MRCC has approved the following places for the purposes of sub-section 323(2):

  • All DVA State Offices (including VAN offices co-located with State Offices);
  • ACT Regional Office of DVA; and
  • The Northern Territory and Townsville Offices of DVA.

MRCA Instrument number 11 – approval of persons

For the purposes of  subsection 323(2), the MRCC has approved the following Officers of DVA, engaged under the Public Service Act 1999,

at any time that they are performing the duties of the following positions:

  • Executive level 2 (DVA Band 4);
  • Executive level 1 (DVA Band 3);
  • APS Level 6 (DVA Band 3);
  • APS Level 5 (DVA Band 2);
  • APS Level 4 (DVA Band 2);
  • APS Level 3 (DVA Band 2).

Claims or other documents received by DVA staff at other places

Provided that a claim is delivered to an approved person, the claim is taken to have been lodged.  Thus, a claim which is handed to an APS 5 officer in a VAN Office that is not co-located with a DVA State Office would be lodged on the day it is received at that Office.  Although VAN Offices that are not co-located with a State Office have not been approved as a place under MRCA Instrument number 8, the claim would, in this scenario, have been received by a person approved under MRCA Instrument 11.

Claims or other documents received by non-DVA staff at other places

Should a person submit a MRCA claim at a place which is not an approved place for the purpose of subsection 323(2) and where no DVA staff are present to receive the claim, the claim has not been lodged.  Currently, this would be the case if a person submitted their claim to a Centrelink Office.  Although the Centrelink Office may be an approved place under section 5T of the Veterans' Entitlements Act 1986, this approval does not extend to claims and documents being lodged under MRCA.

Such documents will only be lodged once the claim is forwarded to a place or received by a person approved under one of the above-mentioned instruments.

Is there a need to approve other places?

A number of State Offices have suggested that Centrelink and other Government agencies should have been included in the instrument of approval of places under sub-section 323(2).  Consideration will be given to this position.  However, unless and until the instrument is amended to include such locations, the date of lodgment of MRCA claims and other documents will be the date that the documents are received by an approved person or at an approved place.


Any queries concerning this instruction should be addressed to Brenda Franklin on extension 16426

Mark Johnson

Branch Head

Military Compensation

   December 2005