Employment and Workplace Relations update: Victorian labour hire licensing laws ― still time to apply without penalty

Dec 4, 2019

The Labour Hire Licensing Act 2018 (Vic) (the Act) is now in effect in Victoria.

In summary, the Act requires:

  • all businesses that ‘provide labour hire services’ (providers) to be licensed through the Victorian Labour Hire Authority; and
  • all businesses (hosts) that engage workers through labour hire providers to only deal with licensed providers.

Under the Act, all labour hire providers were required to apply for a licence prior to 30 October 2019.

The Labour Hire Authority has decided to extend the period in which a labour hire provider can apply for a licence without penalty.

The Authority has announced, where:

  • a complete application is submitted to the Authority before midnight on 31 December 2019; and
  • there is no evidence of non-compliance;

the Authority will not take enforcement action against the provider for providing services without a licence, or any host that enters into an arrangement with that provider.

Provides labour hire services

A business may fall within the definition of ‘provides labour hire services’ if:

  • the business provides workers to a host to perform work in and as part of the business or undertaking of the host; or
  • the business provides recruitment or placement services for workers to perform work for a host, and procures or provides accommodation for the workers; or
  • in the course of conducting a business of contractor management services, the business recruits or places workers to perform work in and as part of the business or undertaking of the host.

The Act also deems a business to be labour hire provider if it provides workers to perform work in ‘high risk’ industries such as cleaning services, horticulture, meat processing or poultry processing.

What to do?

If you think your business may fall within the definition of ‘provides labour hire services’, we recommend that you seek legal advice as soon as possible to ensure your application is submitted prior to midnight on 31 December 2019, if required.

If you think your business is a host which engages a labour hire provider to supply workers, to ensure these providers are licensed and to avoid potential penalties, we recommend that you check the Authority’s licensed labour hire provider and labour hire licence application registers.

If the providers you engage are not listed on the registers, we recommend you seek legal advice.

Other labour hire legislation

Please note that South Australia and Queensland also have current labour hire laws which may apply to your business.

If your business provides labour and operates in these states, we recommend you seek legal advice in relation to the relevant legislation.

More information

For more information, please contact Meaghan Bare, Principal Lawyer and Head of Employment and Workplace Relations, on
(03) 8600 8829 or mbare@kcllaw.com.au, or 
Grace Turner-Mobbs, Lawyer, on (03) 8600 8834 or gturnermobbs@kcllaw.com.au.

Author

This Employment and Workplace Relations update was authored by Grace Turner-Mobbs, Lawyer.

Note: This update is a guide only and is not intended to constitute legal advice.

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