WHS Offence Categories Queensland

Categories of WHS offences

There are four categories of offences for failing to comply with a health and safety duty under the WHS Act and SRWA Act or an electrical safety duty under the ES Act, depending on the degree of seriousness or liability involved.

Industrial manslaughter: the highest penalty under either the WHS Act, SRWA Act or the ES Act is for industrial manslaughter where a person conducting a business or undertaking (PCBU), or a senior officer, negligently causes the death of a worker.

Where a PCBU, or senior officer, commits industrial manslaughter, a maximum penalty of 20 years imprisonment for an individual, or $10M for a body corporate, applies. 

Category 1 Offence

The next highest penalty under either the WHS Act or the ES Act is for a category 1 offence. These are serious breaches where a duty holder who recklessly endangers a person to risk of death or serious injury. Offences involving reckless conduct, will be prosecuted in the District Court.

  • Corporation: up to $3 million
  • Individual as a person conducting a business or undertaking (PCBU) or an officer: up to $600,000 / 5 years jail
  • Individual e.g. worker: up to $300,000/ 5 years jail.

Category 2 Offence

Failure to comply with a health and safety duty or electrical safety duty that exposes a person to risk of death, serious injury or illness. Offences will be prosecuted in the Magistrates Court.

  • Corporation: up to $1.5 million
  • Individual as a PCBU or an officer: up to $300,000
  • Individual e.g. worker: up to $150,000.

Category 3 Offence

Failure to comply with a health and safety duty or electrical safety duty. Offences will be prosecuted in the Magistrates Court.

  • Corporation: up to $500,000
  • Individual as a PCBU or an officer: up to $100,000
  • Individual e.g. worker: up to $50,000.

Note: Appeals in Category 1, Category 2 or Category 3 are made to the District Court.

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By |2019-09-24T01:52:06+00:00September 24th, 2019|Legislation|0 Comments

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