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About the program

The Sick Pay Guarantee is an Australian-first initiative giving Victorian casual and contract workers in certain jobs up to 38 hours a year of sick and carer’s pay.

The program is for eligible casual and contract workers who do not have paid annual, personal, sick or carer’s leave entitlements in any job. This includes sole traders and self-employed workers who do not have employees, and don’t hire contractors or pay anyone to do their work for them.

It is a two-year pilot program, fully funded by the Victorian Government. There is no cost to businesses.

For more information:

Keep your workplace safe and healthy

The Sick Pay Guarantee is expected to reduce workplace injuries and illness, improve productivity and lower staff turnover.

Employers are encouraged to continue supporting workers to take time off when they are sick or need to care for loved ones.

Workers who stay home when they’re sick or injured can recover quicker and return to work sooner.

How workers sign up and make claims

Workers can choose to sign up to the Sick Pay Guarantee. They can sign up and make claims through Service VictoriaExternal Link .

Workers must sign up before they can claim sick and carer’s pay.

For more information, see how to sign up and how to claim.

Employers do not need to:

  • register or sign up
  • make claims
  • make payments.

Employers are not required to be involved in applications or claims for the Sick Pay Guarantee, except:

  • if your worker requests evidence of employment if they do not already have it, and
  • if the Department of Jobs, Skills, Industry and Regions contacts you as an employer to verify a worker’s application or claim as part of a randomised audit.

Employers can’t sign up or claim on behalf of their workers.

Employers are not eligible for the Sick Pay Guarantee.

Payments

Employers do not need to submit claims or make payments.

Workers must submit their own claims for sick and carer’s pay through Service VictoriaExternal Link . Payments are made directly into the worker’s nominated bank account.

Payments are made at the national minimum wage ($21.38 per hour as at 1 July 2022), regardless of whether the worker claims for a weekday, weekend or public holiday.

Workers can’t claim both the Sick Pay Guarantee and COVID-19 support payments for the same period. Find out about financial support available to people and businesses affected by COVID-19External Link .

Leave entitlements

The Sick Pay Guarantee is for eligible casual and contract workers who do not have paid annual, personal, sick or carer’s leave entitlements in any job.

The payments assist workers when they take unpaid sick or carer’s leave. The Sick Pay Guarantee is only available for missed work.

For information about casual employees and what entitlements they receive, see the Fair Work websiteExternal Link .

For information about independent contractors, see the Fair Work websiteExternal Link .

Useful resources

Industry consultation

A consultation process with workers, unions, business and industry groups was undertaken in 2021 to inform the design of the Sick Pay Guarantee. For more information see the Public Consultation Summary Report.

A Ministerial Advisory Committee has been established to provide expert advice on the Sick Pay Guarantee’s implementation, including any issues encountered by workers and employers, and how the two-year pilot’s success will be evaluated.

Share your experience

When evaluating this pilot program, it is important to understand workers’ and employers’ experience of insecure work and the Sick Pay Guarantee.

You can share your experience on the contact us page or by emailing sickpayguarantee@ecodev.vic.gov.au

Reviewed 03 January 2023

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