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Accrual of leave

Comcare has recently received several requests for guidance on how leave should accrue when an employee is on compensation leave.

The following information is provided for employers calculating leave accrual for employees on compensation leave under the provisions of the Safety, Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 1988 (the SRC Act).

Subsection 116(1)(a) of the SRC Act provides that sick leave and recreation leave entitlements continue to accrue as normal during the first 45 weeks during which the employee is on ‘post-determination compensation leave’.

The SRC Act defines:

post determination compensation leave means compensation leave that takes place after the end of the pre determination period in relation to the claim for compensation.

And:

pre determination period, in relation to a claim by an employee for incapacity compensation under Division 3 of Part II, means the period from the start of the day when the employee is injured until the end of the day on which Comcare determines the claim.

In other words, ‘post-determination compensation leave’ is any period of compensation leave that occurs on or after the day immediately after the relevant authority determines the claim.

This means the 45 week count for sick leave and recreation leave accrual will not be the exact same period as the 45 weeks of incapacity at 100% NWE minus AE (subsection 19(2) of the SRC Act). This is because the 45 week count for sick leave and recreation leave accrual starts the day after the claim is determined, whereas the 45 week count for 100% NWE minus AE starts from the first day of incapacity claimed.

In addition, if a primary determination rejects a claim and that claim is later accepted following a reconsideration or Administrative Appeals Tribunal decision, the 45 weeks for sick leave and recreation leave accrual will start the day after the date of the primary determination.

Subsection 116(1)(b) provides that long service leave continues to accrue as normal during any period of compensation leave (i.e. as if the employee were not absent from work).

If you have any questions, please contact Comcare on 1300 366 979 or by email general.enquiries@comcare.gov.au

Scheme Guidance

This information is for: Government sector and Licensees

Document number: SRC304

Last updated: July 2017

Accrual of leave [PDF,76KB]

Page last updated: 24 Apr 2019