Changes to penalty rates in some awards

Updates to penalty rates changes

Visit our Penalty rates changes 2017 page for up to date information about the FWC's penalty rates decision, including transitional arrangements for Sunday penalty rates. You can also subscribe to our email update service and we'll send you an email when our pay tools are updated.

On 23 February 2017, the Fair Work Commission external-icon.png (FWC) handed down a decision to vary certain penalty rate provisions in some awards for the hospitality, restaurant and retail industries.

The decision affects penalty rate provisions for some permanent and casual employees working on Sundays, public holidays, evenings or after midnight in these industries.

These changes don’t apply yet. The starting date for these changes depends on the award that applies and what the change is. 

Find out:

Who do the changes affect?

The changes are different for each award, so they affect employers and employees differently depending on the award they’re covered by.

Changes will apply to the:

  • General Retail Industry Award 2010 [MA000004] (the Retail Award)
  • Fast Food Industry Award 2010 [MA000003] (the Fast Food Award)
  • Restaurant Industry Award 2010 [MA000119] (the Restaurant Award)
  • Pharmacy Industry Award 2010 [MA000012] (the Pharmacy Award)
  • Hospitality Industry (General) Award 2010 [MA000009] (the Hospitality Award).

If you think you might be covered by one of these awards but aren’t sure, you can use Find my award to find out which applies to you.

The FWC is still reviewing the Registered and Licensed Clubs Award 2010 (the Clubs Award) but haven't made any changes at this stage.

What are the changes?

Retail Award

Sunday penalty rates will change from:

  • 200% to 150% for full-time and part-time employees
  • 200% to 175% for casuals.

Public holiday penalty rates will change from:

  • 250% to 225% for full-time and part-time employees
  • 275/250% to 250% for casuals.

Fast Food Award

Sunday penalty rates will change for Level 1 employees from:

  • 150% to 125% for full-time and part-time employees
  • 175% to 150% for casuals.

Public holiday penalty rates will change from:

  • 250% to 225% for full-time and part-time employees
  • 275% to 250% for casuals.

The 10% evening work penalty will apply from 10.00pm (instead of 9.00pm) until midnight. The 15% after midnight penalty will apply to hours worked between midnight and 6.00am.

Restaurant Award

The public holiday penalty rates for full-time and part-time employees will change from 250% to 225%. The casual public holiday penalty will remain as 250%.

The 15% after midnight penalty will apply to hours worked between midnight and 6.00am (instead of 7.00am).

Pharmacy Award

For work between 7.00am and 9.00pm, Sunday penalty rates will change from:

  • 200% to 150% for full-time and part-time employees
  • 225% to 175% for casuals.

Public holiday penalty rates will change from:

  • 250% to 225% for full-time and part-time employees
  • 275% to 250% for casuals.

Hospitality Award

Sunday penalty rates will change from 175% to 150% for full-time and part-time employees. The casual Sunday penalty will remain as 175%.

Public holiday penalty rates will change from:

  • 250% to 225% for full-time and part-time employees
  • 275% to 250% for casuals.

We'll update this website with any further changes.

When do the changes apply?

The FWC has decided that changes to public holiday penalty rates will take effect on 1 July 2017. These changes will apply in full.

The FWC has not made a final decision on how or when the changes to Sunday penalty rates will implemented. The FWC has expressed a preliminary view that these changes will be subject to transitional arrangements which may commence on 1 July 2017. However, the FWC has asked interested parties to make submissions on how the Sunday penalty rates should be implemented and it will then make its decision about how the new rates will be introduced. We'll update this website with more information when this happens.

The changes to the evening work and after midnight penalties (in the Restaurant and Fast Food Awards) will start on 1 July 2017.

When will our tools be updated?

Our Pay Calculator and Pay Guides will be updated before the new penalties start.

In the meantime, come back to the website closer to the date for more information and register for My account for personalised workplace law information.

More information

You can read the summary of the decision external-icon.png, full decision external-icon.png and more about the penalty rates case external-icon.png on the Fair Work Commission's website.

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