In its advice on focus areas for financial reporting given the impact of COVID-19 ASIC has highlighted that companies should provide for additional employee entitlements for past and present employees engaged as “casual” employees in light of the Federal Court decision in WorkPac Pty Ltd v Rossato  FCAFC 84.
ASIC’s advice can be accessed here.
The gist of that decision is that employees engaged and paid as casuals but who work on a regular and systematic basis (analogous to the employment arrangements considered in the case) are entitled to annual leave, personal leave, public holiday pay and redundancy payments under the National Employment Standards and employers are unlikely to be able to offset any casual loading paid against those entitlements.
ASIC also noted that a provision or contingent liability may be required where “casual” employees have been employed in circumstances where there is doubt about whether the reasoning in Rossato applies.
It is therefore important for companies to give proper consideration to whether they have, or may have, employed “casual” employees covered by the Rossato decision and how those liabilities or potential liabilities are reported. This will necessitate careful consideration of the terms upon which casual employees were engaged and actually worked and the likelihood that the legal reasoning of the Federal Court applies to them.
If you would like further information or assistance in relation to these issues please contact the authors.
This article provides general comments only. It does not purport to be legal advice. Before acting on the basis of any material contained in this article, we recommend that you seek professional advice.
Peter Kupniewski, Principal in our Corporate Team
Direct Telephone: +61 8 8210 2223
Paul Dugan, Principal in our Disputes Team
Direct Telephone: +61 8 8210 2266