Who makes the decision to terminate an employment contract in Australia?

In Australia, employers may terminate employees in any employment category, even full-time, open-ended contracts.  

Note that employees are due severance pay when dismissed due to redundancy. In addition, employees must also receive notice or payment in lieu of notice. 

Notice of termination and redundancy pay forms part of the National Employment Standards (NES). Employees may be dismissed for reasons that include redundancy, poor performance, misconduct, or bankruptcy. In the case of an employee’s serious misconduct, a notice period and severance pay are not required.  

In all cases, employers in Australia must provide employees with written notice stating the day of employment termination. The customary notice period is 30 days, though the official required notice periods are as follows:  

  • Employees with less than one year of service receive one week of notice  
  • Employees with one to three years of service receive two weeks of notice  
  • Employees with three to five years of service receive three weeks of notice  
  • Employees with more than five years of service receive four weeks of notice 

If you have questions about terminating employment contracts in Australia, please get in touch with our team today! 

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