Industrial deafness is a serious and permanent injury which can significantly impact a person’s life and self-worth. If you’ve worked around heavy vehicles, industrial machinery or loud equipment in NSW you may be entitled to claim the cost of hearing aids and compensation under the NSW workers compensation scheme.

At Advantage Legal, our expert workers compensation team can manage your industrial deafness claim from start to finish, including applying for funding so that your legal fees and disbursements are completely covered and you’re not out of pocket. We’ll answer your questions, keep you updated on the progress of your claim and provide you with the expert representation you deserve.

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How do I know If I have industrial deafness?

If you have ever worked for a noisy employer such as those in the construction, farming, manufacturing or transport industries and have hearing difficulties you may have sustained an industrial deafness injury. Common symptoms of industrial deafness include:

  • Gradual loss of hearing and onset of tinnitus.
  • An inability to determine where sounds come from.
  • Problems hearing the television or radio unless turned up very loud.
  • Difficulty hearing people on the phone.
  • Trouble hearing in open spaces like shopping centres or indoor sporting venues.

If this sounds like you, we recommend that you obtain an audiogram from your local audiologist who will confirm whether you have hearing loss based on the audiogram findings. Our expert workers compensation lawyers will then be able to advise you whether you are entitled to claim hearing aids, lump sum compensation or both.

If you’d like to know more about your NSW workers compensation rights and entitlements, book a free initial consultation with our senior team.

Industrial Deafness Frequently Asked Questions

Industrial deafness is an irreversible injury which is compensable under the NSW workers compensation scheme. To assist you to understand your rights and entitlements we’ve compiled a number of industrial deafness frequently asked questions. This information is general in nature and does not consider your individual circumstances. It should not be relied upon as legal advice. This information may vary depending on your employment type or the date you last worked in noisy employment.
What can I claim?

People who have sustained industrial deafness in NSW are entitled to claim the following under the NSW workers compensation scheme:

  • Hearing aids
  • Lump sum compensation

If you were exposed to noisy employment in NSW after 1 January 2002, your audiogram will need to demonstrate a binaural hearing loss of at least 20.5% to be eligible for lump sum compensation.


Legal costs and disbursements are claimed on your behalf from the Independent Review Office (IRO) and are payable directly to Advantage Legal at the conclusion of your claim. There is no cost to you for pursuing a hearing loss or lump sum compensation claim with our assistance.


If you would like to know more about your rights and entitlements, get in touch with our expert team for a free initial consultation and confidential advice.

What is the industrial deafness claim process?

The process to pursue a claim for industrial deafness under the NSW workers compensation scheme is as follows:

  • You obtain an audiogram from an audiologist and contact our team for a free initial consultation.
  • We obtain funding from the Independent Review Office to advise you on your legal rights and entitlements and to pay for a disbursements such as medical reports.
  • You attend a medico-legal examination arranged by us. The doctor will provide a report which determines the extent of your hearing loss and whether you have a claim for lump sum compensation.
  • We’ll prepare all claim documentation for you and lodge a claim on the workers compensation insurer of your last noisy employer. This could be a former employer or if you still work in noisy employment, your current employer. The claim could be for hearing aids, lump sum compensation or both.
  • The insurer will typically approve your claim based on the evidence we provide or will request you to be seen by a medico-legal doctor of their choosing. If they obtain their own medico-legal report, the insurer will consider the totality of all of the evidence available, approve your claim, attempt to negotiate or deny it.
  • If your claim is denied or the offer made by the insurer is unacceptable you will then need to attend the Personal Injury Commission of NSW to have the dispute resolved. This may require an arbitration and/or independent medical examination.
  • Once you accept the insurer’s offer or if you obtain a favourable result from the Personal Injury Commission you will obtain your hearing aids and lump sum compensation. If you were exposed to noisy employment on or after 1 January 2002, you will require a whole person impairment of 11% or greater to be entitled to lump sum compensation, which equates to a binaural hearing loss of 20.5%.
Am I entitled to claim a lump sum payout for permanent impairment?

The NSW workers compensation scheme provides that lump sum compensation for permanent impairment is payable for industrial deafness in circumstances where a worker has a whole person impairment (WPI) of 11% or greater. To obtain an 11% whole person impairment, a worker requires a binaural hearing loss of 20.5%.

There are a number of exceptions to the above depending on when your injury occurred and the industry that you work in.


For more information, contact our senior team for a free consultation.

Do I need a lawyer?

It is not compulsory for injured workers to instruct a workers compensation lawyer to pursue a NSW worker compensation industrial deafness claim. However, it is worth noting that claims for compensation are frequently denied by NSW workers compensation insurers. Without knowledge of the NSW workers compensation scheme laws, regulations, guidelines and procedures it is unlikely that you will succeed with your claim without assistance from a workers compensation lawyer.

The Advantage Legal team will manage the entire claim process on your behalf and make sure that you are kept informed at all times. Our professional fees and disbursements will not cost you a cent as they are typically covered by a funding grant from the Independent Review Office (IRO). In circumstances where your claim is denied, we will vigorously defend it on your behalf to ensure that you have the best possible chance of receiving your hearing aids and/or lump sum compensation.

For a free initial consultation and advice, please contact our senior team.

How do lawyers charge for workers compensation claims?

In the majority of circumstances, legal fees and disbursements are covered by a grant of funding from an external organisation known as the Independent Review Office (IRO). This means that you won’t be liable for our professional fees and disbursements if we offer to represent you.


In circumstances where IRO does not provide a grant of funding because your claim falls outside of their jurisdiction and we still offer to represent you, we will do so on a no-win, no fee basis. In such circumstances, costs and disbursements will charged directly to the relevant workers compensation insurer at the conclusion of your claim.


If you would like to know more, contact our senior team for a free initial consultation.

For too long, we have seen injured people treated poorly in NSW by large law firms and insurance companies. At Advantage Legal, we believe that compensation is personal and requires a tailored approach. Our clients trust us to know them personally, be available when they need us and to get the best possible rehabilitation and compensation outcomes for them. We take this trust seriously.

Leigh Davidson 
Principal Solicitor​

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Navigating the path to recovery after an injury can be challenging, especially when dealing with the complexities of Compulsory Third Party (CTP) or workers compensation claims in New South Wales (NSW). An integral part of this journey is engaging with a rehabilitation provider who can guide and support your recovery.

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This website has been updated to reflect changes to NSW motor accident injury scheme. These changes apply to people injured in motor accidents on or after 1 April 2023. Please note that if you were injured in a motor accident before 1 April 2023, different time limits and compensation entitlements apply to your claim. Contact our team for more information.
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