What are the national employment standards?

The national employment standards (NES) in Australia are a set of minimum employment entitlements that apply to most employees in the country. These standards are part of the Fair Work Act 2009 and provide a baseline of employment conditions and rights for all eligible workers. 

Maximum weekly hours

Full-time employees should not work more than 38 hours per week (plus reasonable additional hours).

Requests for flexible working arrangements

Eligible employees can request flexible working arrangements, such as part-time work or changes to their hours.

Parental leave & related entitlements

Eligible employees are entitled to unpaid parental leave, including maternity and paternity leave, as well as the right to request an extension of parental leave.

Annual leave

Full-time employees are entitled to four weeks of paid annual leave per year (pro-rata for part-time employees).

Personal, carer's & compassionate leave

Full-time employees receive 10 days of paid personal/carer's leave and two days of compassionate leave per year (pro-rata for part-time employees).

Community service leave

Employees are entitled to leave for certain community service activities, such as jury duty.

Long service leave

Long service leave entitlements may vary by state or territory but are generally provided after a specified period of service (usually 10 years) with the same employer.

Public holidays

Employees are entitled to be absent from work on public holidays and receive their base pay for the day.

Notice of termination & redundancy pay

Minimum notice periods and redundancy pay entitlements are provided based on an employee's length of service.

Fair work information statement

Employers are required to provide this statement to new employees, which outlines their rights and entitlements under the NES.

Please note that employment laws can change over time, and it's essential to refer to the Fair Work Act or consult with the Fair Work Ombudsman or a legal professional for the most up-to-date information on the National Employment Standards in Australia.

Additionally, specific awards or enterprise agreements may provide additional entitlements or variations to these standards for certain industries or workplaces.

If you're interested in learning more about employment standards and guidelines, click the button below to read our article on equal employment opportunities.

What are the national employment standards?