There has been a lot of communication around new casual conversion laws lately – so what does it all mean, and how can you make sure you’ve got all the main points covered? Read on and we will get you up to speed!
What are new casual conversion laws all about?
March 2021 saw legislative changes to the Fair Work Act resulting in the following:
- A new definition of casual employment has been inserted into the Fair Work Act- a person is a casual employee if they accept a job offer from an employer knowing that there is no firm advance commitment to ongoing work with an agreed pattern of work
- Employers with 15 or more employees are now compelled to offer casuals part time or full time jobs after 12 months service where the employee has worked consistently and regularly
- Small business employers (under 15 employees) must consider requests for casual conversion for certain employees
- These casual conversion laws now extend to all employees covered by the Federal system (now includes Award Free employees). Exemptions are state and local government employees, and sole traders and partnerships in Western Australia
- The ability for employees to “double-dip” on both casual loading and back payments has been addressed with the risk being reduced for employers who correctly articulate the casual employment relationship with their casual employees.
What does it mean for our business?
There are a number of steps you will need to implement to ensure your business is meeting obligations:
- Implement quality employment contracts for all casual employees so that your business is in a defensible position. You may need to update your current contracts to reflect recent changes
- Ensure your casual employees are treated as such. E.g. casuals will have no firm expectation of future shifts/work, and generally have more control over when they work
- Ensure that casual loadings are clearly and separately articulated in payslips
- Review your casual workforce and consider which employees might be regular and systemic and could be offered permanent employment. A guide to casual conversions can be found below
- Ensure the casual conversion obligations in the relevant modern award are adhered to
- Larger employers should ensure all current and new casuals are provided with a Casual Employment Information Statement before 27th September 2021. Smaller employers should issue one as soon as possible.
How to get help regarding the new laws for casuals
The information above is general guidance. Industryus HR strongly recommends employers seek advice from an employment relations professional such as Industryus to implement the steps required for better compliance with the new laws for casuals.
Don’t hesitate to organise a Free Introductory Call to find out how we can help or call us on 07 5655 4047.