Daylight saving in Australia

When daylight saving starts local time goes forward an hour. When it ends, local time goes back an hour.

The states and territories that observe daylight saving are:

  • Australian Capital Territory
  • New South Wales
  • South Australia
  • Tasmania
  • Victoria.

The states and territories that don’t observe daylight saving are:

  • Western Australia
  • Queensland
  • Northern Territory.

Payment for employees working when the clock changes

Employees and employers should check their award or registered agreement for terms about daylight saving. If there is nothing in them about daylight saving, payment is made ‘by the clock’.

This means payment will depend on whether daylight saving starts or ends.


Darryl works an 8 hour shift. Darryl doesn't have an award or registered agreement that says anything about daylight savings.

During this shift daylight saving starts and the clock is put forward 1 hour.

This means that while Darryl only works for 7 hours, he is paid for 8 hours of work.

On the other hand, if Darryl is working when daylight saving ends, while he actually works 9 hours he is only paid for 8.

Daylight saving changes generally occur on a Sunday and sometimes on a public holiday. In both cases, any Sunday or public holiday penalty rates will also be paid 'by the clock' unless an award or agreement provides otherwise.

View references

 Re Daylight Saving and Shift Work (1971) AR (NSW) 887 - it was held that a period of time is measured by the hour of the clock when the period begins and when it ends.

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