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Calculating PIAWE

Calculating PIAWE

If you have lost income due to a work-related injury or illness, you may be eligible for weekly payments. These weekly payments are calculated on your pre-injury average weekly earnings (PIAWE). 


Calculating the PIAWE

The PIAWE is calculated based on your average weekly earnings for 52 weeks before the injury occurred. If you have been with your employer for less than 52 weeks, don't worry, they will calculate it based on your average weekly earnings for the period of employment. Any periods of unpaid leave, or weeks you did not work are excluded from the PIAWE calculation. 

The PIAWE is calculated on your ordinary earnings for the normal number of hours worked per week. This includes: 

  • your base rate of pay, 
  • regular overtime and shift allowances, 
  • piece rates
  • commissions
  • salary sacrifice arrangements, and,
  • non-pecuniary benefits such as residential accommodation, a motor vehicle, education fees, or private health insurance.

Other entitlements including annual leave or long service leave may also impact your weekly payments.

The PIAWE does not include other work-related allowances such as working from heights, clothing and equipment allowances, heat allowances, etc. 

If you need assistance calculating your PIAWE, contact your union or Injured Workers Support

Weekly Payments Percentage Rate

Your weekly payments will be calculated because of the PIAWE. The weekly payments are a percentage of the PIAWE and this percentage rate changes depending on how long you have been receiving the weekly payments. 

Your weekly payment is also influenced by your current work capacity, Your doctor’s recommendations about your injury in relation to your work capacity. This could be Unfit for any duties (No Work Capacity), Fit for Modified Duties (with restrictions) or Fit for Alternative Duties (with restrictions). These rates are summarised below:

Rates If No Work Capacity (Unfit For Any Duties)

Time frame

Percentage of PIAWE

First 13 weeks

95% (including regular shift & overtime rates)

14 - 130 weeks

80% (including regular shift & overtime rates up to the 52 week mark)

Some Work Capacity (Fit for Modified or Alternative Duties with Restrictions)

Time Frame Percentage of PIAWE
First 13 Weeks  95% (including regular shift & overtime rates) minus what you are currently earning at work
14 - 130 Weeks 80% of your actual earnings, less than 80% of PIAWE
After 130 Weeks If you are working at least 15 hours a week earning a minimum amount and are working to your full capacity, you will receive the difference between 80% of your earnings and 80% of your PIAWE. However, you must make a separate application to WorkCover for these payments. 

Note: After 52 weeks, regular overtime is excluded from PIAWE

After 130 Weeks; If you are working at least 15 hours a week, earning a minimum amount and are working to your full capacity. You will receive the difference between 80% of your earnings and 80% of your PIAWE. However, you must make a separate application to WorkCover for such payments.

Make-up Pay
Some Union EBAs require your employer to top-up or “make-up” your WorkCover payments for a specific period. This is an obligation of your employer, not the WorkCover insurer. You must contact your union for more information on EBA Top up payments.

If you continue to receive your non-pecuniary benefits or salary sacrifice arrangements after the injury, the monetary value of these amounts will be deducted from your PIAWE. For example, if you are provided with a motor vehicle that you continue to use after your injury, the monetary amount of using the car will be deduced from the PIAWE. 

Weekly payments are subject to a maximum amount that is equal to twice Victoria’s state average weekly earnings. If your weekly payments are calculated to be above this amount, you will only be paid up to the maximum amount. You may also be entitled to additional or ‘top-up’ pay through your Industry Award or Enterprise Bargaining Agreement. Speak to your union or contact Injured Worker Support for more information. 

After 130 weeks, weekly payments will only continue if you are considered to be unfit to perform any suitable work and that incapacity is likely to continue indefinitely. These payments may continue until retirement age, unless there is a change in your capacity or you sue for a Common Law claim. If successful in suing for a Common Law claim, your weekly payments cease. 

(Superannuation Payments may be available after the first 52 weeks of the claim).

Last Modified: 19/05/2022

The information on this website produced and distributed by the IWSN is of a general nature. We do our best to ensure the information is accurate and up to date, but cannot take any responsibility for any loss arising out of its use. You should not rely on it applying in your own circumstances and should always take further advice from those with appropriate qualifications.

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