We are committed to the protection of the personal information that you provide to us. Personal information is collected under the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act to administer the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act, 1997.
The Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act provides for:
- A right of public access to general records relating to the activities of government
- Privacy protection of personal information held by government institutions and the right of individuals to request access to their own personal information
Protecting the confidentiality of personal information is a shared responsibility. We protect the personal information held by us through policies, procedures, education and awareness programs and ongoing privacy reviews.
Our Privacy Office develops, delivers and maintains the Enterprise Privacy Program, which sets our privacy requirements, identifies and assesses any privacy risks and makes sure we are compliant with privacy legislation.
2. Purpose of collection:
We collect personal information to use in the administration of the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act. We do this to accomplish the following purposes:
- To promote health and safety in the workplaces
- To prevent and reduce workplace injuries and occupational diseases
- To help with the return to work and recovery of workers who sustain personal injury or occupational disease that occur during the course of their work
- To facilitate the re-entry of workers, spouses and same sex partners of deceased workers into the labour market
- To provide compensation and other benefits to workers and to survivors of deceased workers
- To ensure the quality of our products and services through third party researchers.
3. Limiting collection:
We limit the collection of personal information to only what is required to fulfill the authorized purposes of the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act, and we state the reason for collecting the information at the time of collection.
4. Notice and consent:
The Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act permits us to collect, use and disclose personal information necessary to administer the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act. At the time of collection, a notice is provided containing information regarding the:
- Legal authority for the collection
- Principal purpose(s) for which the personal information is intended to be used
- Title, business address, and business telephone number of an individual who can answer your questions about the collection
The Workers Report of Injury or Illness (Form 6) provides the notice of collection to workers claiming benefits under the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act. A more detailed notice is provided in the Privacy Statement for workers. Where personal information is collected through an electronic channel, an electronic notice of collection is provided to the subscriber of the service.
The Workplace Safety and Insurance Act authorizes us to request medical information from health care providers, hospitals, or health care facilities providing health care to a worker claiming benefits without consent.
There may be times, such as in a decision letter, or a Non-Economic Loss (NEL) medical assessment, where confidential information including personal health information related to your claim may be disclosed to your employer without your consent. This is covered under the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act and the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act.
There are additional limited case specific situations where consent is required for the collection, use and/or disclosure of personal information. You must provide consent to allow health care practitioners to disclose functional abilities information directly to your employer when making a claim for benefits. Prior to the individual surveys being conducted, WSIB or a contracted third party will contact you to get your consent for participation in the survey.
5. Limiting use, disclosure and retention:
We use and disclose personal information only for the purposes for which it was collected, or as required or permitted by law. We keep personal information only as long as necessary to comply with legislative or business requirements.
We make reasonable efforts to keep personal information as accurate and complete as possible to be used for the purposes it was collected. We will amend records where appropriate to ensure the accuracy of personal information.
We make every effort to ensure our security measures protect against loss, theft, unauthorized access, disclosure, use, or modifications of information. Such measures vary depending on the sensitivity of the information, amount, format, nature and storage of the information. We use physical, organizational, technical and contractual measures to safeguard the information entrusted to us. Claim files are an example of sensitive information guarded in this way. Procedures are in place to authenticate individuals requesting confidential information.
We provide easy access to information about our policies and practices regarding management of personal information on our website:
- Operational Policy Manual (includes specific policies on confidentiality)
- Privacy Statement for workers
- Code of Business Ethics & Behaviour
- Directory of Records listing all personal information and general corporate records under our control.
Additional resources and information are provided on our Privacy page.
We also provide hard copy resources and general information. Information on privacy policies and practices can be obtained by contacting the Privacy Office at 416-344-5323.
9. Individual access:
Under the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act, both workers and their employer have an interest in a claim and have similar rights to receive fair and equal treatment. When either party objects to a decision, both the worker and their employer can obtain a copy of the relevant claim file documents at no charge to assist them in the appeal process. Before an employer receives the relevant claim file documents, workers have 21 days to object to the release of any health care information not relevant to the adjudication of the claim. Employers have a duty to keep the information received from the WSIB confidential.
You can get a copy of your claim file at no charge by writing to your decision maker and using the Worker Request for Copy of Claim file form (PDF). It is available on our website or by calling the WSIB’s General Enquiry at 1-800-387-0750. All requests must be in writing and a separate form must be submitted for each claim where information is requested. If you have problems receiving a copy of your claim file, please contact Business Services through WSIB’s General Enquiry phone number.
If you have previously received a copy of a claim file, you will receive updates that have been added to the file from the date of your last request. Please provide your current address when you make a request and if the address you provide is different from the one on file, we will update our records for you.
Under the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act, individuals have the right to request access to government records and their own personal information. A $5.00 cheque made payable to the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board is required. The Worker Request for Copy of Claim file form (PDF) assists individuals in making this request and should be directed with your payment to the WSIB FOI Access Specialist in the WSIB Privacy Office. In addition to the $5, other fees may be charged as required by the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act. An estimate will be provided where fees are expected to be over $25. Requests will be responded to within 30 calendar days from date of receipt, or within any approved extended time limit. Decisions on access to records and fee estimates can be appealed to the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario.
10. Challenging Compliance:
We investigate all challenges regarding the collection, use or disclosure of personal information. Should you have any questions or concerns regarding this privacy statement, including the handling, use, or disclosure of your personal information, please contact your decision maker. If you are not satisfied with the response from our business areas, please contact the WSIB Privacy Office.
Workplace Safety and Insurance Board
Privacy Office, 21st floor
200 Front Street West,
Toronto, Ontario, M5V 3J1
General Enquiry: 416-344-1000
Toll free: 1-800-387-0750
Privacy Office: 416-344-5323
If you are still concerned about how your personal information has been handled, you may contact the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario.
When visiting our website or submitting information through our electronic channels
Collection, use, and disclosure of personal information
Visiting our website does not identify you in any way. Our web servers collect domain names and not the e-mail addresses of visitors to our site. We use information like, the number of visits, the average time spent on the site, pages viewed, etc., to measure the effectiveness of our site, improve its content, and be more responsive to your needs. This statistical collection of non-identifiable information may be used by us or be provided to others for marketing, advertising, or research purposes.
If you make a specific request through our website, we may use your personal information to respond to your request.
Cookies and IP addresses
A cookie is a piece of information that a site transfers to an individual's computer. A cookie is generally used to enhance your browsing experience. There are two types of cookies: persistent cookies and session cookies. WSIB may use one or both types of cookies. Persistent cookies are stored on a computer's hard drive where they remain until they are either deleted or they reach a predetermined expiry date. Persistent cookies are most commonly used to provide users with a customized experience by recording preferences. Session cookies do not permanently record data and are not stored on a computer's hard drive. They are stored in memory and are only available during an active session. Once the session ends the cookie disappears. Session cookies are used primarily for technical reasons to allow seamless navigation.
Further information on cookies can be located at the website of the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario.
Certain areas of the website employ Secure Socket Layer (SSL) encryption technology and other resources to enhance data privacy and help prevent loss, misuse or alteration of the information that is provided to us through your use of those systems. When you are in an area of the website employing SSL, the web address of the page will begin with “https”. Please note that the personal information you submit may not necessarily be secure even if using SSL and the WSIB does not make any guarantee regarding the effectiveness of the security measures it has put in place.
If you have any questions about the security of the transmission and storage of information from your computer to WSIB, you should read your user manual or contact your internet service provider.
Additional information and resources
Additional information and resources may be found on the Privacy page.