Covid–19 and Fair Work Amendments


On 9 April 2020, The Fair Work Act was amended to support the implementation and operation of the Government’s JobKeeper wage subsidy scheme in Australian workplaces.

These changes are temporary and are currently in place until 28 September 2020.

The new amendments allow employers to temporarily:

  • Stand down an employee (which can include reducing the hours and/or days the employee works)
  • Change an employee’s duties
  • Change an employee’s location of work

These directions must be in writing and the employer must notify and discuss with the employee at least 3 days before giving the direction and retain a written record of the discussion.

If an employee is issued with a stand down direction it is important to note that  an employee will still acrue their ususal leave entitlements; service is counted for all purposes, and a stand down direction remains in effect until revoked or replaced by the employer, or until the 28 September 2020 provisions come to an end.

The main features of the JobKeeper scheme are:  

  • $1500 per fortnight gross for each eligible employee employed as at 1 March 2020
  • Employee’s base hourly rate cannot be reduced
  • Employees must also continue to be paid any applicable penalty rates, allowances, loadings or leave payments
  • If an employee is entitleed to more than the $1500 per fortnight the employer must pay them the full amount.
  • The Fair Work Act JobKeeper provisons do not remove or change an employee’s general protections or protections from unfair dismissal or discrimination

For more information on the amendments to the Fair Work Act 2009 and Covid-19 please visit

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For any business related enquires please contact the team at Miller Sockhill Lawyers Maroochydore.

Covid–19 and Fair Work Amendments - Miller Sockhill Lawyers