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Government Seeking Feedback from Businesses on Holidays Act Changes

Published 03 Jun 2024

Brooke van Valden, Minister of Workplace Relations & Safety, will release a draft about proposed changes the Government is seeking to make to the Holidays Act 2003, along with seeking feedback from key stakeholders, including businesses on the proposed changes.

The proposed changes are aimed at simplifying the Holidays Act 2003 – particularly for smaller businesses and employers to help reduce compliance costs.

One of the key changes is the proposal to ‘pro-rata’ sick leave entitlement, i.e. reduce the current entitlement to whatever is genuinely reflective of an employee’s actual working arrangements. Currently employees who work part-time hours are entitled to the same amount of paid sick leave entitlement, i.e. 10 Days Sick Leave, the same as a full-time employee.

The proposed changes are also involving moving away from an ‘entitlement-based system’ to an ‘accrual-based system’, which are aimed at removing the problems associated with many of the complex calculations under the current legislation.

In summary, the Government is wanting to simplify the legislation to ensure it is workable and achieves sensible outcomes, while increasing certainty and reducing complexity.

We have as usual registered our interest as an Employers organisation, but any business can and should also register their interest in providing feedback with MBIE before 8 July 2024:

Stakeholders are encouraged to engage in the process and be part of the targeted consultation with MBIE. Specifically, targeted consultation is seeking the views of those who:
  • Have expertise in implementing the Holidays Act in payroll and business systems
  • Understand the impacts and outcomes of the Act for various groups of employers and/or employees.