On 27 October 2022, the Federal Parliament passed the Fair Work Amendment (Paid Family and Domestic Violence Leave) Act 2022 (Act) to legislate ten days' paid family and domestic violence leave under the National Employment Standards. You can read about the National Employment Standards on the Fair Work Commission website here.
What are the new entitlements?
The Act followed the Fair Work Commission's review of the family and domestic violence leave entitlements in modern awards which arrived at a provisional view that the entitlement should be increased to ten days of paid leave (in addition to other paid or unpaid leave entitlements).
The changes come into effect on 1 February 2023. However, employees of small business employers will continue to be entitled to the existing five days' unpaid family and domestic violence leave until 1 August 2023 to allow small businesses time to adjust to the changes. A small business under the Fair Work Act 2009 is an employer with less than 15 employees (total headcount), including any associated entities.
The entitlement extends to full-time, part-time and casual employees and is not pro-rated; all national system employees are entitled to the full ten days' leave regardless of their employment status. You can read about "national system" employees and employers on the Fair Work Commission website here.
Employees are entitled to the full entitlement to ten days' leave immediately – it is not accumulated like personal or annual leave. The leave will not accumulate from year to year if unused. The entitlement will renew annually on 1 February, on 1 August (for small business employers) or, for employees employed after 1 February or small business employees employed after 1 August 2023, the employee's work anniversary.
Pay slip information
The Act also prohibits employers from including certain information on an employee's pay slip, including:
- the amount of paid family and domestic violence leave taken;
- any periods of leave taken as family and domestic violence leave; and
- an employee's paid family and domestic violence leave balance.
This prohibition will commence on 1 February 2023 for all national system employers, including small business employers.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.