There have been a number of important developments relating to the labour hire licensing legislation in Victoria, Queensland and South Australia.
The Victorian Labour Hire Licensing Act
The Victorian Labour Hire Licensing Act 2018 was passed by the Victorian Parliament on 20 June 2018.
While similar in many respects to the labour hire licensing Acts in Queensland and South Australia, the Victorian Act contains some key differences. Ai Group was successful in influencing some important amendments that should reduce the impact on businesses, as outlined below.
On 27 June 2018, certain provisions of the Victorian Act came into effect. These provisions only relate to the establishing of the Victorian Labour Hire Licensing Authority and other related provisions. The Victorian Government has announced that the licensing requirements under the Act are not expected to begin before early 2019, and that the commencement date will be announced well in advance.
A business is considered a provider of labour hire services under the Victorian legislation if, in the course of conducting the business, it supplies one or more individuals to another person (a host) to perform work in and as part of a business or undertaking of the host.
The Victorian Government intends to introduce Regulations excluding particular business arrangements from the requirement to hold a licence. Exposure draft regulations were published on 7 August 2018. Ai Group will make a submission on the draft regulations by the 5 September deadline.
The Victorian legislation includes penalties of up to $507,424 for companies and $126,856 for individuals. The penalties apply to those who provide “labour hire services” without a licence and to those who use an unlicensed labour hire provider. The penalties also apply to persons who enter into an arrangement to avoid obligations under the legislation.
The Queensland Labour Hire Licensing Act – Latest Developments
On 16 June 2018, the Queensland Labour Hire Licensing Act 2017 became enforceable against businesses that are labour hire service providers and businesses that use labour hire service providers.
Labour hire service providers under the Queensland Act had until 15 June 2018 to lodge their licence application to enable them to continue operations while their licence application was determined by Labour Hire Licensing Queensland.
Labour hire service providers that did not submit their licence application by 15 June 2018 must now be licensed to provide labour hire services. These businesses may still lodge a licence application but must not provide labour hire services until such time as a licence is granted by Labour Hire Licensing Queensland.
Businesses using labour hire service providers must now only use providers that are licensed or providers that have an application pending if the application was lodged by 15 June 2018 as shown on the Labour Hire Licensing Queensland Pending Applications List. Businesses can view an online register of the providers who have been granted a licence.
If you would like more information about labour hire please contact Ai Group’s Workplace Advice Service on 1300 55 66 77.
Alternatively, if you would like advice regarding whether the new schemes will cover your business, please contact your local employment, workplace and industrial lawyer in Sydney, Newcastle, Wollongong, Adelaide, Melbourne or Brisbane or email Ai Group Workplace Lawyers at firstname.lastname@example.org.