In November 2019 we advised on the new labour hire licence requirements that came into force as a result of the Labour Hire Licensing Act 2018 (Vic) (LHLA) (see article here).
This article provides an update on measures taken by the Labour Hire Authority to ease the effects of COVID-19 on labour hire operators.
Recap of requirements under the LHLA
If you run a business where you supply one or more workers to work in someone else’s business you must hold a labour hire licence. However, if that labour is not a normal part of that other business you will likely not have to hold a labour hire licence. Typically this will involve scenarios where you are providing the other business with specialised services.
If you run a business that engages labour hire providers to supply you with workers in your business, you must only use licensed labour hire providers.
In addition, under the Regulations to the LHLA certain exemptions may apply to the regime, including where labour is provided as part of secondment arrangements.
The LHLA also deems arrangements within specific industries to be labour hire arrangements, such as where individuals perform activities in commercial cleaning, horticultural, and meat/poultry processing industries.
Announcements by the Victorian Labour Hire Authority (Authority)
On 28 April 2020, the Authority announced it will allow labour hire providers to operate without a licence until 30 June 2020.The announcement comes as a result of the impact of COVID-19.
However, the promise not to take enforcement action against providers or businesses that engage with providers is made only on the condition that labour hire licence applications are submitted to the Authority before midnight 30 June 2020 and no evidence of non-compliance is found.
Labour hire providers should therefore be diligent in continuing to submit labour hire applications to the Authority.
To support businesses during the pandemic, the Authority has also published details of licensed labour hire providers and applicants including the industries to which they nominated supplying workers. Full details of the Authority’s announcement and further information can be found here.
How can we help you?
HWL Ebsworth advises clients on their requirements under the LHLA and on the warranties that they should include in their contracts where the LHLA applies. We provide tailored questionnaires to our clients to help determine whether they, or their service providers, need to hold a licence under the LHLA regime. If you think your business requires a labour hire licence or are a business that engages with labour hire providers, please contact us.
This article was written by Teresa Torcasio, Partner and Chantelle Radwan, Law Graduate.