The Fair Work Commission has varied the Termination of Employment clause and Payment of Wages clause in a number of Awards as part of its Modern Award Review. The two changes that may affect staff members employed by you include:
• Employers are now required to pay an employee’s wages and all other entitlements, within 7 days of the end of their employment.
• An employer can now deduct up to 1 week’s wages if an employee over 18 years resigns without giving enough notice as required by law, (i.e. the Notice Periods outlined in the Modern Award). Employers cannot deduct wages from employees under the age of 18 for not giving notice.
What date do these changes take effect?
All changes apply from the first full pay period on or after 1 November 2018.
Who do these changes apply to?
The new entitlement applies to all employees (including Casual employees) who are covered by an applicable Modern Award which includes the new clauses.
It doesn’t apply to employees who are:
• covered by enterprise and other registered agreements
• covered by a Modern Award that does not include the relevant clauses
• Award free
What do I need to do?
Employers should review the Modern Award/s applicable to their staff to determine if the new clauses have been included.
If you have employees who are covered by a Modern Award containing the new clause under Payment of Wages you must ensure they are paid their final pay no later than 7 days after the day on which their employment terminates.
If you have employees who are covered by a Modern Award containing the new clause under Termination of Employment, and they are over 18 year of age, you now have the ability to withhold up to one week of pay where the employee does not provide the required period of notice.
Please note, the required period of notice is the period set out by law in the Modern Award, and not any additional period of notice that may be included in their contract of employment.
You may also wish to update your policy documents to ensure staff are aware of these changes.
The Fair Work Commission have indicated that the wording under the following clauses have also been varied:
• consultation about major workplace change
• consultation about changes to rosters or hours of work
• dispute resolution
• individual flexibility arrangements.
If your business is about to commence any major workplace change, i.e. Redundancies, or you are looking to initiate an Individual Flexibility Agreement with any staff member, we recommend accessing the most up to date copy of the Modern Award covering these staff to ensure that the process is in line with current legislation.
Please note this is general advice provided by the Fair Work Commission. If you would like any specific advice relating to Modern Awards covering your staff, or you would like additional assistance, please get in contact with us at All 4 People to conduct a review relating to your business.