Last week, the Full Federal Court of Australia handed down a significant decision in the Modelez Australia Pty Ltd v AMWU [2019] FCAFC138.

This case had been in the courts for some time; questioning the method of accruing and taking personal/carer’s leave under the National Employment Standards (NES). Although it’s possible that this decision may be appealed in the High Court, at this moment in time, this decision is currently law.

In summary, the Federal Full Court case needed to establish whether personal/carer’s leave should be calculated as days or hours. As a result, it has been determined that:

  • “Full-time and part-time employees are entitled to 10 working days of paid personal/carer’s leave for each year of employment.
  • The leave protects those employees’ income when they are entitled to be absent from work due to illness or injury (or providing care or support to a family or household member who is ill, injured or suffering from an unexpected emergency).
  • The leave must be calculated in working days, not hours. A working day is the portion of a 24 hour period that an employee would otherwise be working.
  • An employee’s entitlement is expressly based upon time working for the employer and is expressly calculated in days. For example, every 5.2 weeks, an employee accrues an entitlement to another full day of leave.
  • For every day of personal/carer’s leave taken, an employer deducts a day from the employee’s accrued leave balance. If an employee takes a part-day of leave, then an equivalent part-day is deducted from the employee’s accrued leave balance.”

Source: https://www.fairwork.gov.au/about-us/news-and-media-releases/website-news/recent-federal-court-decision-accrual-of-personal/carer-s-leave

Payroll systems and processes will need to be updated to reflect these changes. If you’re not sure how to implement these changes in your business, get in touch with us today.

 

Read the Federal Court of Australia’s decision in Mondelez Australia Pty Ltd v AMWU [2019] FCAFC 138  .

 

 

*This is not legal advice and does not take your specific circumstances into account.