National Employment Standards

The National Employment Standards are a safety net of 10 minimum entitlements for employees in the national workplace relations system. They are part of the Fair Work system that began on 1 January 2010.

If your workplace is in the national system your employer must provide you with the 10 minimum entitlements in the National Employment Standards.

All 10 entitlements apply to full-time and part-time employees. Some also apply to casual employees - see the Casual employees section for details.

If your workplace isn’t in the national system, the conditions for parental leave and notice of termination in the National Employment Standardsapply to you. If your workplace is in a State or Territory system with better conditions, you are entitled to these.

The National Employment Standards cover:

  • maximum weekly hours of work
  • annual leave
  • personal / carer’s leave and compassionate leave
  • parental leave.

The National Employment Standards also cover:

  • the right to request flexible working arrangements
  • community service leave
  • long service leave
  • paid days off for public holidays
  • notice of termination and redundancy pay
  • a Fair Work Information Statement for all new employees that sets out your entitlements and how to get help.

Visit Finding the right pay to find the minimum wages that apply.

Permanent employees

Your permanent full-time employees are generally entitled to at least:

Permanent part-time employees are entitled to a pro-rata amount of the full-time annual leave and paid personal / carer’s leave entitlements. These amounts are based on their ordinary hours of work. They have the same unpaid carer’s leave, compassionate leave and unpaid parental leave entitlements as full-time workers.

Some employees may also be entitled to long service leave.

On public holidays, employees who would usually be working that day are entitled to a day off with pay. There are exceptions where an employer can request an employee to work. However the request needs to be reasonable. See Reasonable requests to work.

Permanent full-time and part-time employees are also entitled to community service leave.

Casual employees

Your casual employees are entitled to:

  • 2 days unpaid carer’s leave (when needed)
  • 2 days unpaid compassionate leave (when needed)
  • community service leave (except paid jury service)
  • reasonably seek a day off on a public holiday
  • parental leave in some cases.

The Fair Work Information Statement is a document that tells employees about the Fair Work system and their entitlements.

All employers in the national workplace relations system must give every new employee a copy of the Fair Work Information Statement before they start their job, or as soon as possible afterwards.

Go to the Fair Work Information Statement page to get a copy of the statement.

You can download it from the Fair Work Information Statement page.

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Page last updated: 22 Sep 2013