Employees of non-small business employers can now access 10 days of paid family and domestic violence leave in a 12-month period. This applies from 1 February 2023 for larger employers and from 1 August 2023 for small employers (less than 15 employees).
This means employees can take time off from work to deal with the impacts of domestic violence or abuse if they need to take care of things during working hours. This includes attending court, accessing police or support services, or making arrangements for the safety of oneself or close relatives (see below for definition).
The new law allows for ten days of paid leave every twelve months. This leave does not rollover or accumulate.
Key issues to consider
- This applies to all employees, permanent and casual.
- Close relatives is taken to include a spouse, partner, former partner, child, grandchild, parent, grandparent or sibling; or the child, parent, grandparent, grandchild or sibling of a current or former spouse or partner. Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal kinship relatives are also included.
- The leave is available as soon as an employee starts with an employer.
- Employees must inform the employer as soon as possible about the need for leave and the expected length of time required.
- The employer is within their rights to ask for evidence such as police, court, or support service documents, or a statutory declaration, even if the leave period is less than a day.
Impact on small business
As mentioned above, this new leave provision applies from day one of employment for all employees which means that employers should plan for the potential cost of the leave. It is unlikely that all employees will take this leave however preparing for the possible cost means you won’t get caught out if you do have to pay leave, particularly for casual workers.
To understand how this may impact you and your business, schedule a time with us.