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🚨 New Legislation: Employees ‘Right’ to ‘Disconnect’

Employees will soon gain the 'right to disconnect'. This means they'll be able to refuse after-hours contact from their employer.

What You Need To Know

The new legislation will start six months after royal assent (the final thumbs-up a law gets from a king/queen - or their representative -after it's been approved by lawmakers. It's the last step before the law becomes official and starts being used).

For small businesses, it will start 18 months after royal assent.

Employees will have the right to decline the monitoring, reading, or responding to employer contacts outside working hours, unless the refusal is considered unreasonable.

This right extends to third-party work-related contact (customers, suppliers, colleagues, etc), with factors like purpose, method, disruption, compensation, role, and personal circumstances influencing reasonableness.

Disputes will be initially resolved at the workplace level, escalating to the Fair Work Commission if necessary.

Breaching orders can result in penalties.

Action Steps

  1. Assess your current after-hours communication

  2. Educate your staff on after-hours contact expectations

  3. Implement/update an after-hours communication policy

  4. Review contracts for clear remuneration terms related to after-hours work.

  5. Promote a culture respecting employee privacy outside work hours.

If you need professional support with this, feel free to reach out

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The content provided on this website serves as a general information resource on the subjects discussed, and should not be considered tailored to specific individual circumstances or a replacement for legal counsel. While we exert significant effort to ensure the accuracy of our information, HR Consulting TAS cannot ensure that all content on this website is consistently accurate, exhaustive, or current. Recommendations by HR Consulting TAS and any information acquired from this website should not be regarded as legal advice.

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