Are you taking part in work experience, an internship or volunteering to boost your employability over the tuition free week? If you are, it’s essential to have workplace insurance to protect you in case, heaven forbid, anything happens to you. Most employers are reluctant to take students on without insurance, but if it doesn’t come up before starting, make the employer aware you definitely need it!
Work insurance can cover short-term or long-term placements and, at a minimum, safeguards you for Public Liability and Personal Accident Cover. These might seem like some pretty big words and a complicated situation to be in – don’t panic, we’ll explain it in layman’s terms for you.
Public Liability and Personal Accident Cover
Public Liability Insurance will cover you if you accidentally damage a third party’s (the employer) property – it’ll help you in case they try to sue you for damages. Personal Accident Insurance covers students for injury or death while performing duties at the organisation, and when travelling to and from work when organised by the host organisation.
How to get workplace insurance
This is as simple as contacting the Employer Engagement team on campus, once you’ve secured a role, to enquire about whether your placement complies with guidelines to receive cover. You’ll be instructed to complete two pre-placement professional development modules online and complete two online forms to qualify for insurance. One form being a risk assessment and the other an insurance application detailing your duties and tasks completed during the work experience. It typically takes five days to process applications; so ensure you apply well-before your placement start date.
Criteria you’ll need to satisfy
In order to receive work insurance cover for co-curricular (outside of unit – no credit received) placements from Curtin, you’ll need to abide by some simple rules:
- You must be a current enrolled student at Curtin during your placement
- Placements are limited to 112.5 hours
- Supervision must be applied by a staff member or host organisation
- The placement must be undertaken at the host organisations’ premises, and cannot be undertaken online or remotely
- Finally, the placement must be unpaid
Volunteering, vocational placements and international internships
Volunteers should be covered by the not-for-profit group they contribute to and won’t need to seek additional insurance from Careers, Employment & Leadership. It is a good idea to check with the organisation before commencing that insurance is all sorted.
Vocational placements that form part of student’s curriculum are covered by the University – so you won’t need to seek additional insurance from Careers, Employment & Leadership.
The Employer Engagement team also provide students with insurance to cover you whilst undertaking internships in different countries.
Experienced professionals on hand to help
If you have any questions or need advice, the team are available pretty much all year round via phone and email.
Additional resources to consider
Fair Work Ombudsman – Unpaid work fact sheets
Fair Work Ombudsman – Student placements fact sheet
Careers For Tomorrow – Know Your Work Experience Rights
Careers For Tomorrow – International Students Working In Australia
There’s been a recent change to our work experience insurance requirements. For the latest information, and to ensure you’re insured, please read Work Experience Insurance For Students.