Based on what you've told us, it looks like you're covered by the Fast Food Industry Award [MA000003].
An employee can take paid time off instead of being paid for overtime if their employer agrees.
An employer can't force or pressure an employee to take time off instead of being paid for overtime.
Taking the time off
An employee gets the same amount of time off as the rate of overtime they would have been paid. This means that:
- for each hour of overtime worked at time and a half, an employee gets 1 and a half hours paid time off
- for each hour of overtime worked at double time, the employee gets 2 hours paid time off.
The time off has to be taken within 6 months of working the overtime and at a time (or at more than one time) that the employer and employee agree to.
If the employee doesn't take the time off within 6 months of working the overtime, their employer has to pay them the overtime that would have applied in their next pay cycle.
At any point before the time off is taken, the employee can request to be paid the overtime instead and the employer has to pay it in the next pay period.
If an employee has accumulated time off instead of being paid overtime and their employment ends before they take it, the employer has to pay them the overtime that would have applied.
Fast Food Industry Award resources
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To find out more about who this award applies to, go to the Fast Food Award summary.
Source reference: Fast Food Industry Award [MA000003] clause 26.3