Written contracts for owner drivers and hirers

Overview

The Owner Drivers and Forestry Contractors Act 2005 provides that certain engagements must be in writing and must specify the minimum hours of work or income level that the contractor will receive. The Transport Industry Council has prepared a model contract for use by the industry.

The legislation provides that ongoing engagements of no fixed duration or for a period of at least 30 days must be in writing, and must specify the guaranteed minimum of hours work or income level that the contractor will receive. Written contracts must also set out the rates to be paid to the contractor, and the minimum period of notice of termination of the engagement, or payment in lieu of notice.

Written contracts, especially for longer term arrangements, are good business practice and help reduce disputes and uncertainty. Written contracts do not have to be long, or complex and legalistic. It is a good idea to set out in writing the most important aspects of your arrangements.

To assist parties to comply with the requirements under the Owner Drivers and Forestry Contractors Act 2005 for written agreements and to promote good drafting of contracts, the Transport Industry Council has developed a model contract. The model contract is in two parts, the second part is the schedule to the contract, which must also be filled in by both parties and sets out the rates to be paid and a range of other matters.

The model contract represents an industry benchmark of typical contractual terms. The Transport Industry Council may publish further versions of the model contract and different versions for use in particular industry sectors.

It is not compulsory to use the model contract, but you may find it useful as guidance on standard contract terms, or to use the model contract but vary certain terms.

Download a copy of the Model Contract for Owner Drivers and the Model Contract for Owner Drivers Schedule from the Business Victoria website.

Page last updated: 21 November 2016