Long service leave when business ownership changes

Information status

All announcements issued prior to 1 July 2017 were issued by the former Department of Commerce. Announcements listed here are the latest versions available, but may be subject to review. For more information on this announcement, please contact online@dmirs.wa.gov.au.

This announcement is for: 
Employee / workerEmployer

Wageline gets many calls from employers and employees about long service leave obligations when business ownership changes.

The state long service leave obligations in the Long Service Leave Act apply to most WA businesses, including businesses covered by national modern awards.

Under the Long Service Leave Act the length of employment for an employee's long service leave entitlements is based on the total time with the business, rather than any one specific employer.

The Long Service Leave Act requires that where a business has been transmitted from one employer (the previous owner) to another employer (the new owner) and an employee who at the time of such transmission was an employee of the previous owner in that business becomes an employee of the new owner - the period of the continuous employment which the employee has had with the previous owner (including any such employment with any prior previous owner) is deemed to be employment of the employee with the new owner for long service leave purposes.

A transmission of business includes the sale or transfer of a business or part of a business, whether voluntary or by agreement or by operation of law.

An employer who buys a business or part of a business will take on long service leave obligations for existing employees if there has been a transmission of business. This applies regardless of anything written in the sale contract.

The Long service leave page provides information on the Long Service Leave Act and details which employers and employees are covered by the Act's provisions.

Labour Relations
Department News
09 Jun 2017

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