Your practice nurse recently ceased employment. A few days later, you receive a letter from the nurses’ union alleging that the nurse has not been paid all of the overtime she is due and demanding access to your time and wages records. The union also claims that your practice has breached its obligations under the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth), as it has not provided the nurse with pay slips. The maximum penalty for breaching this law is $6,300.
Employment records are an essential part of practice management and should not be neglected. In our experience, scenarios such as the one above are common, so it’s important as a practice owner or practice manager, to understand the legal requirements in terms of record keeping, to protect yourself and your practice from investigation and possible breaches.
We set out below a summary of the key record keeping requirements under the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) and Fair Work Regulations 2009 (Cth). While this is a summary, there are other specific record keeping requirements in the legislation that you should make yourself aware of*.
An employer must make an employee record available for inspection and provide a copy to the employee or former employee upon request. An employer is required to keep certain employment records containing the following information for a period of seven years.
Within one working day of paying the employee, an employer must give an employee a pay slip (electronic or hard copy), which must specify:
In addition, if the employee is paid at an hourly rate of pay, the pay slip must also include:
If the employee is paid at an annual rate of pay, the pay slip must also include the rate as at the latest date to which the payment relates.
If the employer is required to make superannuation contributions for the benefit of the employee, the pay slip must also include the amount of each contribution that the employer made during the period to which the pay slip relates, and the name of the fund to which the contribution was made.
The pay slip must also include the basis on which the employer became liable to make the contribution and a record of the employee’s election to have the employer make contributions to the fund and the date of this decision.
Avant now offers PracticeHub – a new online platform designed to make running a successful practice safer and more efficient. PracticeHub incorporates policies, procedures, and templates as well as training and compliance modules. Find out more.
*Fair Work Act 2009 Sections 535-536; Fair Work Regulations 2009: Pt 3-6 Div 3 Subdiv 1 prescribe requirements for employee records
By: Sonya Black, Special Counsel – Employment Law, QLD, Avant Law
This article was originally published on avant.org.au on Aug 11, 2017