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On 15 May 2018 the Long Service Leave Act 2018 (Vic) (the Act) received Royal Assent with an effective date of 1 November 2018. The Act repeals and replaces the Long Service Leave Act 1992 (Vic), provides increased benefits for various classes of employees, including in particular parents and carers, and will apply to all employees in Victoria unless explicitly excluded.

Key changes to long service leave in Victoria include:

  1. Employees will be entitled to take long service leave after at least 7 years of continuous employment with the one employer.

  2. Employees may request long service leave for a minimum of 1 day at a time and the employer must grant an employee’s request as soon as practicable after receiving the request, unless the employer has reasonable business grounds for refusing the request.

  3. Periods of absence from work which are taken to be periods of employment for the purpose of determining a period of continuous employment have been expanded to include any period of paid parental leave as well as periods of unpaid parental leave up to a maximum of 52 weeks.

  4. Adding a third option for calculating ordinary time rate of pay, by determining the average weekly rate earned by an employee during his or her entire period of continuous employment with the employer immediately prior to taking long service leave.

  5. Adding a third option for calculating an employee’s normal weekly number of hours, by determining the average weekly number of hours worked in the employee’s last period of continuous employment immediately prior to the long service leave.

The Act also includes significantly increased penalties for breaches as well as criminal liability for officers of a body corporate found to be accessorily liable.

For advice or information about your long service leave obligations, please contact:

Jim Rutherford
Principal
T + 03 5226 8579
E: jrutherford@ha.legal

or

Sonia McCabe
Senior Associate
T 03 5226 8558
E: smccabe@ha.legal

or 

Sophie Ware
Associate
T 03 5226 8577
E: sware@ha.legal