Domestic and Family Violence Leave – Am I entitled?
From 1 February 2023, employees, of all genders, will be entitled to leave if they are a victim of Domestic and Family Violence.
If you are employed by businesses and companies with 15 or more employees you are now able to access 10 days of paid family domestic violence leave. This includes part-time and casual employees.
If you are an employee, employed in a small business of less than 15 employees, you can access paid leave from 1 August 2023. Until then, you can continue to take unpaid family and domestic violence leave.
The leave doesn’t need to be taken all at once and can be taken as single or multiple days. You do not need to utilise the full 10 days and the remainder will not accrue to the following year.
Circumstances requiring Domestic and Family Violence Leave
You can take leave from work to attend to the following matters, including but not limited to
- making arrangements for your safety, or the safety of a close relative (including relocation)
- attending court hearings
- accessing police services.
You will need to notify your employer as soon as possible that you have taken time off due to Domestic and Family Violence which is affecting your ability to attend work.
Do I need to show my employer proof of my situation and need for Domestic and Family Violence Leave?
To take paid Domestic and Family Violence Leave you will be required to show your employer evidence to support your application for leave.
Types of evidence can include:
- a statutory declaration;
- documents issued by the police service;
- documents issued by a court; or
- family violence support service documents.
Employers can ask employees to provide evidence for as little as one day or less off work. If you do not provide sufficient evidence to convince a reasonable employer, you may not get paid.
Your employer cannot use your information for any other purpose, including to take adverse action against you, which could occur if the domestic violence is proved to have negatively affected your employer.
Your employer can only use this information to satisfy themselves that the employee is entitled to family and domestic violence leave, unless:
- you consent;
- your employer is required to deal with the information by law; or
- it’s necessary to protect the life, health or safety of the employee or another person.
If you or a loved one is affected by domestic violence, do not hesitate to call 000 in an emergency or further support can be accessed by contacting 1800 Respect (1800 737 732) for 24 Hour assistance
Family Law Advice
Should you require further advice on domestic violence matters or separating your property and making suitable arrangements for your children, which protects them from further exposure to domestic violence, please do not hesitate to call for a free 15 minute chat with one of our family lawyers.