New paid family and domestic violence leave
10 November 2022 | Updated 9 February 2023
Employees of non-small business employers can now access 10 days of paid family and domestic violence leave in a 12-month period.
Employees of small businesses can access the leave from 1 August 2023.
On this page:
Confidential information, counselling and support for people impacted by family and domestic violence and their employers is available at the 1800 RESPECT website, the national sexual assault, domestic and family violence counselling service.
Non-small business employers and employees
Paid family and domestic violence leave is available for employees of non-small business employers, from 1 February 2023.
We have our updated our website and key resources to support these workplaces to introduce the new leave. Go to Paid family and domestic violence leave now.
Small business employers and employees
Employees employed by small business employers (employers with less than 15 employees) can access this paid leave from 1 August 2023.
Until then, they can continue to take unpaid family and domestic violence leave. Read about the existing rules at Unpaid family and domestic violence leave.
All employees in the Fair Work system (including part-time and casual employees) will be entitled to 10 days of paid family and domestic violence leave in a 12-month period. This new entitlement replaces the existing entitlement to 5 days of unpaid family and domestic violence leave under the National Employment Standards (NES).
Employees are entitled to the full 10 days upfront, meaning they won’t have to accumulate it over time. The leave doesn't accumulate from year to year if it isn’t used.
The new leave entitlement is available from:
- 1 February 2023, for employees of non-small business employers
- 1 August 2023, for employees of small business employers.
Employees can still access 5 days of unpaid family and domestic violence leave until the new paid leave entitlement becomes available to them. Find out more about unpaid family and domestic violence leave.
Read on for information about how this leave works.
How the leave renews
The leave renews every year on each employee's work anniversary. It doesn’t accumulate from year to year if it isn’t used.
Employees who start on or after the date that the paid leave entitlement becomes available at their new workplace can access the full 10 days from their first day. The leave will renew on their work anniversary.
Employees who are already employed when the paid leave entitlement starts in their workplace can access the full 10 days on the relevant start date. The leave then renews on the anniversary of when they started working for that employer (not on the anniversary of the relevant start date).
For examples on how this applies, go to Taking paid family and domestic violence leave.
Employees (including part-time and casual employees) can take this paid leave if they need to do something to deal with the impact of family and domestic violence.
This could include, for example, the employee:
- making arrangements for their safety, or the safety of a close relative (including relocation)
- attending court hearings
- accessing police services
- attending counselling
- attending appointments with medical, financial or legal professionals.
Meaning of family and domestic violence
Under the new provisions, family and domestic violence means violent, threatening or other abusive behaviour by an employee’s close relative, a current or former intimate partner, or a member of their household that both:
- seeks to coerce or control the employee
- causes them harm or fear.
A close relative is:
- an employee's
- spouse or former spouse
- de facto partner or former de facto partner
- a child, parent, grandparent, grandchild or sibling of an employee’s current or former spouse or de fact partner, or
- a person related to the employee according to Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander kinship rules.
Full-time and part-time employees can take paid family and domestic violence leave at their full pay rate for the hours they would have worked if they weren't on leave.
Casual employees will be paid at their full pay rate for the hours they were rostered to work in the period they took leave.
An employee's full pay rate is their base rate plus any:
- incentive-based payments and bonuses
- monetary allowances
- overtime or penalty rates
- any other separately identifiable amounts.
For examples on how this applies, go to our Taking paid family and domestic violence leave page.
An employee can use paid family and domestic violence leave during a period of paid personal/carer’s or annual leave. If this happens, the employee is no longer on the other form of paid leave and is taking paid family and domestic violence leave instead. The employee needs to give their employer the required notice and evidence.
There are rules about how information about paid family and domestic violence leave must be reported on pay slips and what information must not be included, including some transitional rules. This is to reduce the risk to an employee’s safety when accessing paid family and domestic violence leave.
Learn the rules that apply from our Pay slips page.
If an employee takes paid family and domestic violence leave, they have to let their employer know as soon as possible. This could be after the leave has started. An employer can ask their employee for evidence to show that the employee needs to do something to deal with family and domestic violence and it’s not practical to do that outside their hours of work.
An employer can only use this information to satisfy themselves that the employee is entitled to family and domestic violence leave, unless:
- the employee consents
- the employer is required to deal with the information by law, or
- it’s necessary to protect the life, health or safety of the employee or another person.
The employer can't use the information for other purposes, including to take adverse action against the employee.
All other rules about notice and evidence are the same as the currents rules for taking unpaid family and domestic violence leave.
Some workplaces may provide employees with paid family and domestic violence leave entitlements in registered agreements, employment contracts or workplace policies.
If the entitlement to paid family and domestic violence leave in any of these instruments is less than the minimum entitlement under the NES, the NES entitlement applies.
To make sure you’re notified when the leave comes into effect at your workplace, subscribe to email updates.
In the meantime, you can:
- Find out more about unpaid family and domestic violence leave and download our Employer guide to family and domestic violence
- Read The Hon Tony Burke MP’s media release at Paid leave for family and domestic violence starts now.