• GL
Choose your location?
  • Global Global
  • Australia
  • France
  • Germany
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Poland
  • Qatar
  • Spain
  • UAE
  • UK

Proposed Fair Work Act amendments to provide further leave entitlements for parents

03 September 2020
Legislative amendments to the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) (Act) are being proposed to provide additional leave entitlements for parents.

While the proposed legislation has not passed Parliament yet, if it does, it will:

  • allow parents to take up to "30 days of unpaid parental leave (flexible unpaid parental leave) during the 24 month period" of the child's birth (or placement); and 
  • ensure that 12 months' unpaid parental leave is available for families dealing with stillbirths, infant deaths or premature births.

The rationale for the 30 day flexible leave is to allow parents to spend leave with their newborn child after returning to work, in order to balance work and family arrangements.

This leave will be available "in full" to part-time and casual employees – that is, it does not appear to be a pro-rated entitlement.

Of course, the interplay of these provisions with other portions of the Act, will mean that employees will receive protections from the General Protections provisions contained in the Act should any prejudicial action be taken against them for taking the leave.

Further, the Explanatory Memorandum to the legislation notes that this proposed legislation is consistent with provisions under the Paid Parental Leave Amendment (Flexibility Measures) Bill 2020 (Cth), which provides for government payments at minimum wage during periods of parental leave to be broken into two periods (that is, during the initial parental leave and during the subsequent 30 day period of flexible unpaid parental leave).

Should this legislation be enacted, it will be important that businesses and Human Resources professionals are aware of these entitlements and ensure systems and processes are updated appropriately.

If you require further information or have any queries in relation to this legal update, please contact George Haros, William Marshall or a member of our Employment team.

Further Reading

We use cookies to give you the best user experience on our website. Please let us know if you accept our use of cookies.

Manage cookies

Your Privacy

When you visit any web site, it may store or retrieve information on your browser, mostly in the form of cookies. We mainly use this information to ensure the site works as you expect it to, and to learn how we can improve the experience in the future. The information does not usually directly identify you, but it can give you a more personalised web experience.
Because we respect your right to privacy, you can choose not to allow some types of cookies. Click on the different category headings to find out more and change permissions. However, blocking some types of cookies may prevent certain site functionality from working as expected

Functional cookies

(Required)

These cookies let you use the website and are required for the website to function as expected.

These cookies are required

Tracking cookies

Anonymous cookies that help us understand the performance of our website and how we can improve the website experience for our users. Some of these may be set by third parties we trust, such as Google Analytics.

They may also be used to personalise your experience on our website by remembering your preferences and settings.

Marketing cookies

These cookies are used to improve and personalise your experience with our brands. We may use these cookies to show adverts for our products, or measure the performance of our adverts.