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The Fair Work Commission has issued the next tranche of 31 modern awards as part of its 4 year review. Some will commence operation from 13 April 2020 and others from 4 May 2020. We also remind employers of the pending rise of 0.5% for compulsory superannuation rates in 2021.

Modern Awards We previously advised in EMA Note 21 of 2019 that the first batch of new awards had been declared by the Fair Work Commission with a commencement date of 4 February 2020. The second tranche of 31 updated awards has been released. Details of the new awards and their commencement dates can be found on the modern awards page of the Fair Work Commission. If your employees are covered by an affected award, you should review the new award and adjust any internal processes for compliance. This includes changing templates for letters of offer to ensure consistency with the 2020 award, including using the new name for the award. If your employees are covered by an enterprise agreement, in most cases there will be no immediate change because the award usually will not apply while an enterprise agreement is in operation. However, if you are currently negotiating a new agreement, you should be familiar with the new award in case changes affect your bargaining or the Better Off Overall Test.

Superannuation Guarantee Prolific commentary about low wage growth has continued. Recently the Reserve Bank commented that the pending rise in super contributions may have an inhibiting effect.
Super contributions are set to lift by 0.5% to 10% from July 2021. While EMA Consulting does not provide tax or superannuation advice, employers should be aware of the requirement and may factor that into any wage projections or enterprise agreement cost considerations if negotiating for periods beyond July next year.



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