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New definition of “Casual” work

A fly-in/fly-out truckie, having worked 4 years at a large Queensland mine site, where his work consisted of 12 hour shifts on a 7 days on/7 days off roster at a flat hourly rate,  successfully applied  to the Federal Court-supported by the CFMEU- for paid leave exceeding $20,000.

According to the Court, his work conditions didn’t meet the criteria of ‘casual’ employment.  Its key finding was that the essence of casual employment is the lack of a firm commitment as to the period of employment and the days or hours of work. The presence of these factors points to full or part time employment. The Court rejected the employer’s argument that a casual rate premium was included in his hourly rate.

This decision could prompt a raft of back pay claims by staff in the hospitality, retail and aged care sectors, even though they may enjoy a 25 per cent casual loading!