Other Leave Entitlements

Compassionate Leave

All employees (including casual employees) are entitled to compassionate leave (also known as bereavement leave).

 Under the NES, Compassionate leave can be taken when a member of an employee's immediate family or household:

  • dies or
  • suffers a life-threatening illness or injury.

Immediate family under the NES is defined as an employee's:

  • spouse
  • de facto partner
  • child
  • parent
  • grandparent
  • grandchild
  • sibling, or a
  • child, parent, grandparent, grandchild or sibling of the employee's spouse or de facto partner.

Employees will be able to take compassionate leave for other relatives (e.g. cousins, aunts and uncles) if they are a member of the employee's household, or if the employer agrees to this or if your Enterprise Agreement allows it.

Amount of compassionate leave

Under the NES all employees are entitled to a minimum of 2 days compassionate leave each time an immediate family or household member dies or suffers a life threatening illness or injury. You should check your Agreement for any additional entitlements which may be available to you.

Compassionate leave can be taken as:

  • ​a single continuous 2 day period, or
  • 2 separate periods of 1 day each, or
  • any separate periods the employee and the employer agree.

An employee does not accumulate compassionate leave. It can be taken any time an employee needs it.

If an employee is already on another type of leave (e.g. annual leave) and needs to take compassionate leave, the employee can use compassionate leave instead of the other leave.

Payment for compassionate leave

Full-time and part-time employees receive paid compassionate leave and casual employees receive unpaid compassionate leave.

Full-time and part-time employees are paid at their base pay rate for the ordinary hours they would have worked during the leave.

This generally doesn't include separate entitlements such as incentive-based payments and bonuses, loadings, monetary allowances, overtime or penalty rates but you should check your Agreement to see if there are any additional entitlements.

Compassionate leave cannot be cashed out.

Notice and evidence

Under the NES, an employee taking compassionate leave must give their employer notice as soon as they can (this may be after the leave has started). The employee must tell the employer of the period, or expected period, of the leave.

An employer can request evidence about the reason for compassionate leave (e.g. a death or funeral notice or statutory declaration). This request for evidence has to be reasonable. If the employee doesn't provide the requested notice or evidence they may not get compassionate leave.

An Award or registered Agreement can include terms about the kind of evidence that an employee must provide to get compassionate leave.

Jury Service

Jury duty, also known as ‘jury service’, is a type of community service leave.

Employees, including casual employees, can take leave to attend jury selection and jury duty.

Notice and evidence

Employees must advise their employers of the period or expected period of leave as soon as possible. If an employee requests leave they need to provide evidence showing they attended jury selection or jury duty.

Payment for jury duty

An employee, other than a casual employee, has to be paid 'make-up pay' for the first 10 days of jury selection and jury duty. Make-up pay is the difference between any jury duty payment the employee receives (excluding any expense-related allowances) from the court and the employee's base pay rate for the ordinary hours they would have worked.

Before paying make-up pay, an employer may request evidence from the employee to show:

  • that the employee has taken all necessary steps to obtain jury duty pay
  • the total amount of jury duty pay that has been paid or will be payable to the employee for the period.

If the employee can't provide evidence, they won't be entitled to make-up pay.

State and territory laws continue to apply to employees where they provide more beneficial entitlements (e.g. payment for casual employees during jury duty).

Find out more about jury duty in NSW on the NSW Justice Department’s website or Ph.: 1300 722 574.

Other forms of Leave:

Please check your Award or Agreement for any additional leave entitlements. Some examples of these type of leave are:

Community Service Leave (excluding Jury service leave)

Defence Forces Leave

Emergency Services Leave

Natural Disaster Leave

Blood Donor Leave

Domestic Violence Leave

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