Are you aware that Long Service Leave legislation has changed in Victoria?
Read the highlights here and take action yourself and if in doubt, get support.
A jaded business owner once said to me that, when it comes to workplace rights and responsibilities, employees have all the rights… and employers all the responsibilities. While not entirely true, the rights of employees do often rely on the responsible actions of their employer.
If you’re a business owner in Victoria and you employ staff, then you need to be aware of, and act on, changes to Long Service Leave (LSL) legislation. The latest onces came into effect at the start of November 2018.
Summary Of The Key Changes To Long Service Leave
- Your employees can take LSL after seven years of continuous service (and not 10 as before);
- No more minimum periods of LSL – Employees can now take leave in a series of small parcels of as little as one day;
- LSL now accrues during paid parental leave;
- Continuous service includes unpaid parental leave absences of up to 12 months and unpaid sick leave;
- You calculate LSL accruals on averaged weekly hours. For staff who have worked irregular hours, this means that you must ensure that employment records of hours worked are up to scratch!
It’s important to note that these changes are NOT RETROSPECTIVE – so the way you’ve been accruing LSL for employees in Victoria up until 31 October 2018 is accurate. These changes only affect service and leave accruals from 1 November 2018 onwards in Victoria.
Traditionally LSL has been something that the employee could direct when it was taken, but there were minimum “blocks’ in which that leave could be taken. Now your employees have ultimate flexibility over how they use their LSL entitlements.
Keeping Up With Legislation Changes
As a business owner, you’re busy and there are multiple issues that you need to keep aware of. Information, Updates, material of relevance keep flooding your inbox. Then we get to the priority correspondence from suppliers, business partners and clients. At times it can be overwhelming – and yet when it comes to employee records, entitlements and pay there is zero tolerance for getting it wrong. The question is, how do you stay on top of all this stuff?
Payroll processing can be done by an external provider or your accountant, of course. But be aware that it is not their responsibility to get it right. They are not the employer: you are. They may also be a specialist in payroll or tax but not human resources.
So what can you do?
One option is to do it yourself and subscribe to some informative updates.
The Upside: It saves you professional service fees.
The downside: It costs more of your precious time
Engage your payroll provider (internal or external) to keep up to date on HR and industrial relations matters
And engage with a business advisor who works with you on your business and who has connections and information that you need.
If you’d like to discuss your particular situation, please feel free to contact member of The NCP Pam Macdonald