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Australia’s Awards system is defined by its complexity

Ai Group’s Annotated Awards are defined by their clarity

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A casual employee does not have a statutory right to elect to convert from casual to full-time or part-time employment - this right is determined by the applicable industrial instrument.

Almost all modern awards create a right for casual employees to request to convert to permanent employment in certain circumstances. Enterprise agreements may also contain rights in relation to casual conversion.

From 1 October 2018, 85 modern awards which did not already contain a clause allowing casuals to request to convert to permanent employment were varied to insert a model casual conversion clause. The model conversion clause includes a requirement that:

An employer must provide a casual employee, whether a regular casual employee or not, with a copy of the provisions of this subclause within the first 12 months of the employee’s first engagement to perform work. In respect of casual employees already employed as at 1 October 2018, an employer must provide such employees with a copy of the provisions of this subclause by 1 January 2019.

The 28 modern awards that already contained a casual conversion clause (e.g. the Manufacturing and Associated Industries and Occupations Award 2010) were not varied to replace the existing provisions with the model provision. These modern awards have alternative notification obligations for regular casual employees.

Members should check the relevant clause in the applicable award or enterprise agreement for the specific notice requirements. Ai Group’s Workplace Advice Line (1300 55 66 77) can assist members with questions about casual employees’ rights to convert or responding to a request for conversion.

This sample letter is to be used communicating to a relevant employee their right to elect to convert to permanent employment.

Guidance notes and instructions are shown italicised.

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