Have employees who start work a little early or finish late?

Public news

Having a worker turn up early or leaving late from a shift may entitle them to compensation if they injure themselves while on your business’s premises.

A recent worker’s compensation case could set a new precedent after an employee who was continually told to arrive ten minutes before their shift actually started, was ruled as an ‘enforced work break’.

The Queensland court ruled in favour of a McDonald’s worker, categorising the time she was required to be at work as an ‘enforced break’ and as she injured herself during that time, she was entitled to worker’s compensation.

This case makes it clear that any employers who require a worker to be on the premises of a business outside of their shift hours can be deemed as “within the course of their employment.”

The employee’s application for workers compensation was originally rejected by WorkCover Queensland. However, on a recent appeal by the Industrial Court of Queensland, the ruling by WorkCover Queensland was overturned.

While it necessary for employees to often arrive or leave a workplace late, employers must be aware of this possibility that you may be liable for workers compensation if an accident does occur on your premises.

The MTA is running an IR training course on Workers Compensation on February 20. Click here to register your attendance.

If you have any concerns on your obligations as an employer in regards to workers compensation or enforcing employees arrive at your place of business early or late, contact the Workplace Relations team by clicking here.