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Recent Federal Court decision: accrual of personal/carer's leave

Posted by Fair Work Ombudsman on 6 September 2019

On 21 August 2019, the Full Federal Court of Australia has handed down a decision in Mondelez Australia Pty Ltd v AMWU [2019] FCAFC 138. The decision deals with the method of accruing and taking paid personal/carer's leave for the purposes of the National Employment Standards under the Fair Work Act 2009. \

The FWO is reviewing and updating its advice in light of this decision. Although the decision may be appealed to the High Court if any special leave application is made and granted, the full Federal Court's decision reflects the current state of the law. The majority of the full Federal Court has determined: 

  • Full-time and part-time employees are entitled to 10 working days of paid personal/carer's leave for each year of employment.
  • The leave protects those employees' income when they are entitled to be absent from work due to illness or injury (or providing care or support to a family or household member who is ill, injured or suffering from an unexpected emergency). 
  • The leave must be calculated in working days, not hours. A working day is the portion of a 24 hour period that an employee would otherwise be working. 
  • An employee's entitlement is expressly based upon time working for the employer and is expressly calculated in days. 
  • For every day of personal/carer's leave taken, an employer deducts a day from the employee's accrued leave balance. If an employee takes a part-day of leave, then an equivalent part-day is deducted from the employee's accrued leave balance.  

The Fairwork Obudsman is in the process of updating our website in this regard. 

For further information click here

Author: Fair Work Ombudsman
Tags: Resources Industry News Consumer Information

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