The information currently on this website is based on the Labour Hire Licensing Act 2018 and the Labour Hire Licensing Regulations 2018, and provides broad details of the labour hire licensing scheme.
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Who is a labour hire provider?
There are three main categories of labour hire providers under the scheme. A provider is a business that:
- provides one or more individuals to perform work in and as part of a host’s business or undertaking where the individuals are workers for and entitled to be paid by the provider
- in the course of providing recruitment or placement services, recruits or places one or more individuals to perform work in and as part of a host’s business or undertaking and the provider procures or provides accommodation for some or all of the period that the individuals are working with the host
- in the course of conducting a contractor management service, recruits or places one or more individuals who are independent contractors to perform work in and as part of a host’s business or undertaking, and manages the contract performance by the independent contractor.
Labour hire providers will need to be licensed in order to operate legally in Victoria once the licensing scheme comes into effect later this year.
Who is a labour hire worker?
Workers are generally individuals employed and paid by labour hire providers and supplied to host businesses, farms or organisations on a full-time, part-time or casual basis.
In addition, if a person supplied by a labour hire provider is entitled to be paid by a host, that person will be a worker under the Labour Hire Licensing Act 2018 if the labour hire provider also procures or provides accommodation for the person.
A person who is an independent contractor supplied to a host by a labour hire provider will also be a worker under the Labour Hire Licensing Act 2018 if the labour hire provider continues to manage the performance of the contract — for example by providing administrative and payroll functions or performance management in relation to the contractor.
Providers that supply only individuals excluded from the definition of worker in the Labour Hire Licensing Act 2018 and the Labour Hire Licensing Regulations 2018, such as certain secondees or students, will not be regarded as labour hire providers and will not be required to be licensed.
Who needs to be licensed
Under the Labour Hire Licensing Act 2018, all labour hire providers will need to be licensed.
If you supply a worker or workers to work for another business or person, you could be operating as a labour hire provider. If you are, once the labour hire licensing scheme commences you will need to apply for a licence.
If you are unsure whether you are a labour hire provider, you should seek independent legal advice for your particular circumstances.
The transition period
Once the labour hire licensing scheme commences, labour hire providers must register online to create an account and then apply for a licence.
Providers must be licensed or have applied for a licence within six months of the commencement date of the scheme.
Labour hire providers who do not apply for a licence within six months of the licensing scheme commencement will be prohibited from providing labour hire services from the end of the transition period.
Businesses operating as unlicensed labour hire providers could incur substantial fines, with a maximum penalty for corporations exceeding $500,000.
How do I obtain a licence?
When the scheme commences, providers will be able to apply for a licence through an online portal accessed through this website.
Applicants will be required to provide the Labour Hire Authority with information about a wide range of matters such as:
- full name and address
- if the applicant is a body corporate, the full name, address and date of birth of each officer of the body corporate
- whether the applicant is registered with the Australian Taxation Office and WorkSafe Victoria
- the number of workers supplied by the applicant to hosts during the 12-month period before the date of the application, and any information prescribed by the regulations in relation to those workers
- the industrial instruments that determine the terms and conditions of employment or engagement of those workers
- whether those workers hold temporary work visas, and if so, the number of workers who hold such visas and the types of visas they hold
- the industry or industries in relation to which the applicant is providing labour hire services and intends to provide labour hire services
- whether there is an intention to provide transport or accommodation to the workers
- whether any person relevantly connected to the application has or may have contravened a labour hire industry law, a workplace law or minimum accommodation standards.
Fit and proper person test
The Labour Hire Authority will conduct a 'fit and proper person' assessment for each relevant person included in an application.
A person or a body corporate will not be a fit and proper person under the Labour Hire Licensing Act 2018 at the time the application is made if they have within the last:
- 10 years been found guilty of an indictable offence against a person, or an offence involving fraud, dishonesty or drug trafficking that was punishable by imprisonment of 3 months or more (or an equivalent offence committed outside Victoria)
- 5 years been found to have contravened a workplace law, labour hire industry law or minimum accommodation standard, or given an enforceable undertaking in respect of a contravention of one of those laws
- 5 years had a licence under a labour hire industry law cancelled, suspended or revoked other than at the licence holder’s initiative
- 5 years, where an applicant is a body corporate, been insolvent or under external administration
- 5 years the applicant was an officer of a body corporate and was disqualified from managing corporations under the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth).
If you are uncertain about meeting the fit and proper person test, you should seek legal advice.
Compliance with legal obligations
An applicant will need to declare that, to their knowledge, they comply with:
- taxation laws
- superannuation laws
- occupational health and safety laws
- workers compensation laws
- labour hire industry laws
- workplace laws
- migration laws and
- applicable minimum accommodation standards.
Applicants who are not yet conducting a business that provides labour hire services will be required to declare that they have in place a plan for compliance with the above laws and submit this to the Labour Hire Authority on request.
The specific application and licence fees that will apply are set out in the Labour Hire Licensing Regulations 2018 and may change from time to time.
An application fee will need to be paid when you apply for a licence. This fee will not be refunded in the event the application is withdrawn or is unsuccessful.
At the present time, for the purposes of sections 17(6) and 24(1)(d) of the Labour Hire Licensing Act 2018, the prescribed application fee will be:
- for a tier 1 business—108 fee units
- for a tier 2 business—288 fee units
- for a tier 3 business—532 fee units.
In 2018 – 19 a fee unit is $14.45.
An annual licence fee will be payable when the licence is specified to come into force, then each year in the 6-week period preceding the anniversary of that date.
For the purposes of section 35(1) of the Labour Hire Licensing Act 2018, the prescribed annual licence fee will be:
- for a tier 1 business—75 fee units
- for a tier 2 business—200 fee units
- for a tier 3 business—368 fee units.
Tier 1, 2 and 3 businesses are defined in the Labour Hire Licensing Regulations 2018. You are advised to review carefully your business’s individual circumstances in relation to these definitions.
If your application is successful, you will be granted a licence that remains in force for up to three years.
Monitoring the licensing scheme
The Labour Hire Authority will have a team of inspectors who will promote compliance with, and enforce, the licensing system. Inspectors will have a range of powers to ensure compliance with the scheme and, where there are reasonable grounds, will be authorised to:
- enter and search premises
- examine and seize anything suspected of being connected with a possible contravention
- inspect, copy or take extracts from documents on the premises and make images or recordings
- seek the assistance of other persons
- where necessary apply to the Magistrates' Court for a search warrant.