Under recent changes to the Fair Work Act, workplace entitlements and obligations for casual employees have altered effective from 27th March 2021. Employers now need to give all new casual employees a Casual Employment Information Statement (CEIS). Small business employers need to give their casual employees who were employed before 27th March 2021 a copy of the CEIS as soon as possible. All other employers have to give their existing causal employees a copy of this document as of the 27th September 2021.
A small business employer is defined by the Fair work Act as an employer with fewer than 15 employees as a particular time. When counting the number of employees, those of associated
entities of the employer are included. Casual employees are not included unless engaged on a regular and systematic basis. The Fair Work Act has been amended to include a new definition of a casual employee. 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. This will only change if they become a permanent employee through casual conversion or being offered fulltime/part time work or they
stop being employed. If you are not considered a small business, and your have 15 or more employees, the rules about offers and requests for casual conversion are as follows:
- You must offer permanent employment if the employees have been employed for 12 months
- Have worked a regular pattern of hours for at least the last 6 months on an ongoing basis, and;
- The regular hours could continue as a permanent employee without significant changes.
Your employer needs to make the offer to you in writing by 27 September 2021 or within 21 days after your 12-month anniversary, whichever is later. You have to respond to the offer in writing within 21 days after the offer is given to you. Your employer doesn’t have to offer you casual conversion if there are reasonable grounds for them not to, or you are not eligible. After 27th September 2021, employees can make a request to become a permanent employee if:
- The casual employee has been employed for at least 12 months
- They have worked a regular pattern of hours in the last 6 months on an ongoing basis
- Regular hours could continue as a permanent employee without significant changes
- Casual employee hasn’t refused a previous offer to become a permanent employee in the last 6 months
- You as the employer have not told the employee in the last 6 months you can’t offer casual conversion on reasonable grounds, and;
- You as the employer have not already refused a request from the employee to become permanent based on reasonable grounds in the last 6 months.
Employees can make the request in writing from 21 days after their 12 month work anniversary and you as the employer has to respond in 21 days. If you refuse a request, employees can’t make
another request for 6 months.
Please see the following link to find the CEIS to send to your employees. This can be sent by mail, email, fax or in person. https://www.fairwork.gov.au/employee-entitlements/national-employment-standards/casual-employment-information-statement We hope to see accounting software like Xero, MYOB, Quickbooks etc. develop systems to alert employers and payroll managers when casual employees have been employed or are coming up to having been employed for 12 months to help manage these changes to casual employment entitlements under the Fair Work Act.
For more information on this, please head to https://www.fairwork.gov.au/about-us/news-and-media-releases/website-news/reforms or contact a Human Resources specialist.
Brooke has had 10 years of experience helping businesses in her roles as a tax accountant, Virtual CFO and bookkeeper. She is passionate about helping business owners, women in business in particular, understand their figures better and empowering them with the tools and the support to grow their businesses and adhere to their goals. She has a keen interest in the e-commerce space.