In a landmark ruling on Wednesday, the Federal Court confirmed a casual mining worker employed by labour-hire firm WorkPac was entitled to paid leave — a decision that could drastically change payroll costs for many firms.

The Australian Industry Group was quick to sound the alarm bells for employers, suggesting the cost for businesses forced to pay entitlements could potentially hit $8 billion.


Court upholds casuals’ double dipping’ precedent

Australian Council of Trade Unions secretary Sally McManus said the decision was a “massive step forward” in fighting insecurity of work.

Australian Council of Trade Unions Secretary Sally McManus says the ruling is a win for workers suffering because of “systemic casualisation”.

“We need to stop the practice of some employers labelling jobs as ‘casual’ when they are in fact, permanent. This has stripped workers of rights and security,” McManus said in a statement circulated Wednesday.

Read more about what this might mean for your business if you employ casuals: Lawyers say businesses should consider converting casuals after landmark Federal Court ruling re-ignites “double dipping” claims

Industry groups estimate that this judgment could affect more than 1 million workers across the country and cost businesses $8 billion with more than 1 million casual workers who do regular shifts rostered in advance could be entitled to annual leave, sick leave and other entitlements full-time employees get.

It’s already shaping up as a political battle.

Click here to read: Federal court ruling on casual entitlements could be appealed by Government as industry groups voice concern

How will this court decision affect your business finances?

Businesses that employ casual workers regularly — even if the days they work each week vary — are being advised to take immediate steps to reduce their potential liability.

We are working closely with clients now to see what this means for their individual circumstances.

If you need financial insight into how this might impact your business, we highly recommend you book an initial chat to see whether our advisory team could be a good fit to support your needs.

You can schedule your initial free no-obligation consultation call here: