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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    3

    Default Start date on employent contracts

    Hi all

    I have recently moved to a new employer who currently has the option of listing "Start date to be mutually agreed" or "Start date TBC" on their new employment contracts. I have always understood that employment contracts must have a start date on them (even if this is later to be changed) to be lawful. Have I been given the wrong advice previously?

    Also, the contracts for existing employees make no mention of annual leave balances etc continuing when they change roles. Is this a requirement or just nice to have?

    Thanks all
    H_R

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Posts
    192

    Default

    Often when job offers are made verbally, the new hire may not yet know when he/she can start their new job (may have to do with notice in current job and perhaps having a break in between jobs). The new employer thus send out the confirming offer contract with a 'TBA" against the start date. The employee then fills in the date, initials against that date signs and returns the employment contract. This is very common. Companies don't want to delay getting the offer to the new hire so try to save some time this way. So to answer your question, yes, there needs to be a date and it is handled this way or, if the employer knows when the new hire will start, they insert the date before sending out the contract.

    And to your second question, it is only necessary to state that annual leave etc is provided. Usually when someone is promoted or changes jobs within an organization, they are given a Variation of Employment Contract setting out the new job title, who it reports to, effective date and remuneration with a general sentence that all other terms and conditions remain unchanged. With 20+ years in HR, I have never seen anything anywhere written about balances continuing. It is just accepted that is the way it is, no need to state it.

    The only area where annual leave may be effected is when companies transfer employees overseas where legislation/employment law can be vastly different to Australia. In that kind of a situation, an annual leave balance at time of transfer would still be there but accrual of future A/L could change depending on the country the employee is going to.

    Tiger

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    3

    Default

    Hi Tiger

    Thanks for your thoughts.

    Interesting around your leave balances point, I have worked at several large organisations previously all of whom include this as mandatory in their contracts for transferring staff.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    453

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by H_R View Post
    Hi Tiger

    Thanks for your thoughts.

    Interesting around your leave balances point, I have worked at several large organisations previously all of whom include this as mandatory in their contracts for transferring staff.
    H_R, you mention "contracts" and "transferring" staff - I thought you were talking about someone's job changing within the same organisation? In most cases that simply means a new job title and a new salary and all other employment conditions remain the same.

    If someone changes jobs within the same organisation the continuity of their employment continues so their leave balance is not affected nor are any other accrued entitlements affected.

    That said, some employers may use promoting someone as an opportunity to get them to sign a new, updated, employment contract, in which case it probably makes sense to mention leave balances.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    SA
    Posts
    14

    Default

    Annual leave remains and accrues with you while the employee maintains 'service' with the employer (s.87 -FWAct), irrespective of the role changes within the employer.

    The only effect role changes will have to Annual Leave would be respect with potential modern award coverage changes and whether leave loading applies, and termination annual leave entitlements.

    Agree with Moz re new contracts most ERs remind employees of balances and the need to take leave and potential shutdown issues of the new position etc.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Posts
    1

    Default

    We send out the majority of our offer of employment contracts with the start date to be mutually agreed. It is not unlawful. That said, it is a lot more work as we then need to generate confirmation of start date letters when a start date is agreed.

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