Long Service Leave reform – update

Published: 21 September 2018

The Long Service Leave Act 2018 will commence on 1 November 2018. 

Long service leave (LSL) is a long-standing entitlement for Australian employees. The Long Service Leave Act 2018 (Vic) (the LSL Act) sets out arrangements for long service leave in Victoria. The Act replaces the Long Service Leave Act 1992 (Vic) (1992 Act).  

A review of the 1992 Act found that it had not kept pace with community standards, (for example, in the way that it treated parental leave), and was not easy to understand. The new LSL Act has been written so that it is easier to understand, is fairer to people whose working circumstances change, and is more flexible.  

Key changes 

The new laws will provide greater flexibility to women, families and those transitioning to retirement. 

  • Employees will be able to apply for leave after seven years of work, rather than ten years. This does not, however, change the quantum of the entitlement, which will still be 1/60th of the total period of continuous employment (less any long service leave already taken).  
  • Employees can now take long service leave in smaller increments, i.e. a minimum of one day per occasion.  

  • Absences from work including unpaid parental leave will generally not break continuity of service. 

  • Certain breaks will now count towards accrual of LSL, e.g. unpaid parental leave of up to 12 months, or longer in certain circumstances. 

  • New penalties apply for failing to produce records when requested. 

The Long Service Leave Act (2018) is available as a PDF and Word version. 

An alternative link to the Act can be found at the Victorian Legislation and Parliamentary Documents website. To locate the document, select the top menu item Victorian Statute Book and select the year 2018 and select the Long Service Leave Act (2018) - Act Number 12. 

Portable Long Service Leave 

The Long Service Benefits Portability Bill 2018 was passed by the Victorian Parliament on 5 September 2018. The Bill establishes a new portable long service leave and benefits scheme for workers in the contract cleaning, security, and community services sectors. The scheme will commence in mid-2019. 

The Long Service Benefits Portability Act 2018 is available as a PDF and Word version.  

An alternative link to the Act can be found at the Victorian Legislation and Parliamentary Documents website. To locate the document, select the top menu item Victorian Statute Book and select the year 2018 and select the Long Service Benefits Portability Act 2018 - Act Number 44. 

For more information, go to the dedicated Long Service Leave section of the Business Victoria website.