The Fair Work Commission (FWC) has issued determinations varying 104 awards to insert redrafted model clauses dealing with individual flexibility arrangements, consultation about major workplace change, consultation about changes to rosters or hours of work, dispute resolution, and termination of employment. The award variations are operative from 1 November 2018.

The most significant change relates to the standard clause which gives an employer the right to deduct money from wages due on termination for notice not given by an employee. Over the past 12 months, there has been a hard-fought contest between the Australian Industry Group and the unions concerning whether or not the standard award clause can remain in awards. Following several rounds of submissions over the past 12 months and a hearing, a Full Bench of the FWC decided upon a new model clause which:

  • Requires an employee to give notice of between 1 week and 4 weeks, depending upon the employee’s length of service;
  • Clarifies that the clause does not apply to the employees identified in s.123(1) and 123(3) of the Fair Work Act (e.g. casuals, fixed term employees, etc);
  • Enables an employer to deduct from wages due to an employee (who is at least 18 years of age), an amount that is no more than one week’s wages; and
  • Specifies that any deduction from wages must not be unreasonable in the circumstances.

If you would like more information about providing notice in relation to the termination of employment please contact Ai Group’s Workplace Advice Service on 1300 55 66 77.

Alternatively, if you would like advice about the changes to the modern awards in the award review please contact your local employment, workplace and industrial lawyer in Sydney, Newcastle, Wollongong, Adelaide, Melbourne or Brisbane or email Ai Group Workplace Lawyers at

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