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Greater Long Service Leave flexibility in Victoria by 1 November 2018

Libby Pallot, Anthony Massaro, Abbey Burns, Ben Tallboys, Caitlin Walsh

The Long Service Leave Act 2018 (Vic) has now been passed by parliament, with the new Act set to come into effect by 1 November 2018. 

What does this mean? 

By way of a summary, by 1 November 2018:

Employees will be able to:

  • take long service leave after 7 years’ continuous employment, instead of 10 years’ continuous employment; and
  • take long service leave as one or more periods of leave, including taking single day periods of leave.

Employers will have to:

  • include unpaid parental leave in any calculation of continuous employment;
  • calculate long service leave entitlements based on the last period of continuous employment for employees whose hours of work have changed during the last 24 months. This is in addition to the existing formulas which are calculated based on the last 12 months or the last 5 years; and
  • recognise continuous service where an employee is employed by the employer within 12 weeks of termination by the employer, even where the employee had resigned.

The provisions dealing with transfers of business have been expanded to apply to employees who perform work with a new employer in connection with intangible assets of their old employer (such as intellectual property).

An additional indirect benefit for employees is that compliance officers now have the power to compel a person to produce relevant information or documents where a suspected breach of the legislation has occurred.

These changes create greater flexibility for employees but may present challenges to employers. Please contact Russell Kennedy’s Workplace Relations, Employment and Safety Team for tailored advice on the impact these changes may have on your business and to ensure you comply with the new obligations.

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