On 1 November 2018 changes to Victoria’s long service leave laws came into effect. The changes seek to provide further rights to employees and further responsibilities on employers.

In essence, the amendments comprised of the following changes, which benefit Employees:

  1. Employees are now being able to apply to take their long service leave after 7 years’ continuous employment as opposed to the 10-year requirement under the previous legislation.
  2. Employees are also now able to apply to their employer to take double the amount of long service leave for half the pay. In the event that the employer seeks to deny this request, they must prove that it has occurred on ‘reasonable business grounds’.
  3. Employees are now also able to take their long service leave in smaller leave periods, such that they can use their long service leave for leave requests of one day or more.
  4. Under the former legislation unpaid leave and/or parental leave did not count toward the accrual of long service leave. However, the amended legislation no longer considers this to be the case, and any unpaid leave and/or parental leave will now count toward the accrual of long service leave. Furthermore, Casual employees are entitled to take up to 104 weeks’ parental leave before continuous employment is considered to be interrupted.

In addition to the above changes which seek to benefit employees, the amendments have also sought to impose greater penalties on employers who are in contravention of the legislation. Under the amended legislation, employers who don’t keep records will be faced with increased penalties as a result of their failure to keep proper records.

Pointon Partners is experienced in advising on long service leave and other employment legislation. Should you require advice in relation to these legislative changes, or any other employment matters, do not hesitate to get in touch with Michael Bishop, Amelita Hensman or Stefano Mazzeo