Zombie agreements” are any individual or collective registered agreements made prior to 1 January 2010 which have continued to operate as transitional instruments following the introduction of the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) (FW Act).

Under the Fair Work Legislation Amendment (Secure Jobs, Better Pay) Act 2022 (Cth) (Amendment Act):

• all zombie agreements will automatically cease to have effect from 7 December 2023 (unless their operation is extended by the Fair Work Commission (FWC); and
• employers with one or more zombie agreements covering their workforce must give those employees notice of the automatic sunsetting by 6 June 2023 (failure to do so may attract a civil penalty).

This advice provides guidance for members on how to identify whether they are covered by one or more zombie agreements, options available to remove a zombie agreement, the process for requesting the FWC to extend the period of operation of a zombie agreement, and a template letter for notifying any affected employees.

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