Community Services Long Service Leave Queensland

QLD Portable LSL for Community Services starts 1 Jan 2021

We’ve previously written here about the QLD Portable LSL for Community Services that will cover approximately 45,000 workers in the Community Services industry – the commencement date has now been announced as 1 January 2021. Here we’ll explain what employers need to do to prepare for the scheme.

Find out if you need to register

First and foremost, find out if you need to register – you must register with QLeave if you employ workers in these industries:

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community services
  • Accommodation support services
  • Advocacy services
  • Alcohol and other drug support services
  • Child safety and support
  • Community development services
  • Community education services
  • Community legal services
  • Counselling services
  • Disability emergency response services
  • Disability support services
  • Employment services
  • Family and domestic violence services
  • Financial counselling services
  • Foster care and out-of-home care services
  • Home and community care services
  • Homelessness support services
  • Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex or queer services
  • Mental health services
  • Migrant and multicultural support services
  • Offenders transitioning services
  • Respite services
  • Seniors community support services
  • Social housing services
  • Violence prevention services
  • Women’s services
  • Youth justice services
  • Youth support services.

The following workers are not eligible for the scheme (if you only employee these workers you do not need to register for the scheme):

  • federal, state and local government workers
  • workers engaged to perform work unrelated to the purpose of providing community services
  • workers in standalone childcare and early childhood education centres, kindergartens and school-based childcare services
  • workers employed in aged care, in a nursing home or retirement village delivered by a standalone aged care provider or service

Register as an Employer with QLeave online

QLeave will accept employer registrations after 1 October 2020. Penalties may apply if an employer does not register within 7 days of employing an eligible worker (maximum 40 penalty units, or $5,338) – the scheme commencement date is 1 January 2021 so the deadline for existing employers will be 7 days after that but don’t leave it until the last minute!

Register your business with QLeave here.

Check that your books and records can store the required information

Make sure your processes/systems can track and store the right information – you need to be able to provide it for compliance inspections for up to six years after the last entry was made:

  • worker’s full name, address and date of birth
  • worker’s QLeave membership number
  • type of work performed
  • periods, and proportions of the periods, during which the worker performed the eligible work
  • any award details for each worker (where applicable)
  • Time and wage records (eg timesheets)

These records need to be kept for all eligible workers, including working directors and labour-only subcontractors (eg a sole trader you have contracted in to provide eligible work), and also labour hire staff and workers who support the provision of community services (eg administrative or executive staff).

Understand your ongoing reporting and payment obligations

You will need to lodge an online return with QLeave and pay the associated levy quarterly. The levy rate is 1.35% of the workers’ ordinary wages, which includes:

  • award and over-award wage payments
  • weekend penalty rates
  • public holiday penalty rates
  • first aid, shift, ‘on call’, leading hand, refuse collection and toilet cleaning allowances
  • annual leave (taken as leave)
  • sick leave (taken as leave)
  • long service leave (taken as leave)
  • employer paid maternity/ paternity/parental leave
  • bereavement leave
  • personal/carer’s leave
  • casual loading
  • employer paid worker’s compensation payments
  • jury service
  • salary sacrifice deductions
  • over award payments
  • other payments made by agreement
  • very important – if you have hired someone as a subcontractor (sometimes called an “ABN Employee”), their ordinary wages is the invoiced amount excluding materials and GST.

Due dates for lodgment and payment are:

  • 14 January
  • 14 April
  • 14 July
  • 14 October

Last but not least!

Get started now with calculating your upcoming liabilities under the scheme. The extra employee costs will have a large impact on businesses, especially those with a fixed charge rate. If you haven’t factored this into your budgets and cash forecasts, do so now. If you need some assistance with this, contact Ascern.

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