Early access to portable long service leave
The Minister for Employment and Workplace Safety announced a special portable long service leave entitlement for workers who have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The special early release entitlement is available to workers who have at least 18 months of service recorded in the ACT alone with at least one day of service recorded in the last 12 months, whose normal pattern of work has been severely impacted by COVID-19. To be eligible a worker needs to have suffered hardship because they are unable to work and unable to earn remuneration because of COVID-19. Examples of these situations include:
- the worker is unemployed and unable to return to employment due to the COVID-19 emergency
- the worker has had their employment terminated by their employer or has been stood down without pay by their employer and is not receiving any other form of remuneration
- the worker is not ill with COVID-19 but is self-isolating because of potential exposure to COVID‑19
- the worker is required to care for someone who is ill with COVID-19 or isolating because of potential exposure to COVID-19
- the worker is ill with COVID-19 and is not able to access paid sick leave.
Workers with more than 18 months of service in the ACT who have not yet reached a full portable long service leave entitlement can now access up to two weeks of long service leave. Please note – Workers who are still employed will need to obtain their employers authorisation to access leave. For those workers who have already reached a full portable long service entitlement, normal benefit claim arrangements continue to apply.
Workers considering applying for the new early release entitlement should be aware that any future overall entitlement will be reduced by the amount of service claimed under these arrangements.
A claim form for this entitlement is available at https://actleave.act.gov.au/claim-form-early-release-entitlement , or you can request for a claim form to be sent to you by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can check your recorded service balance by accessing the worker portal at https://secure.actleave.act.gov.au/pub/employeeLogin.aspx. You can also update your contact details directly through the worker portal.
The special early release entitlement is available to workers throughout the current emergency declaration made under the Public Health Act 1997. Applications for this benefit must be made whilst the COVID-19 emergency declaration is in force.
For further information please email the Authority at email@example.com.