Important information: Applications received before 30 June 2020

The Authority will not take enforcement action against a provider for providing labour hire services without a licence, or a host who enters into an arrangement with that provider, where a complete application is submitted to the Authority before midnight 30 June 2020 and there is no evidence of non-compliance.

For more information go to labour hire licence applications received before 30 June 2020.

Who needs to be licensed?

Under the Labour Hire Licensing Act 2018 (LHL Act), all labour hire providers must be licensed.

If you supply one or more workers to perform work in and as part of a business or undertaking of another person, you’re likely to be a labour hire provider. If you are you will need to apply for a licence.

If you are unsure whether you are a labour hire provider, you should review the information about the types of labour hire providers below at ‘who is a labour hire provider’, or seek independent legal advice for your particular circumstances.

Who is a labour hire provider?

To operate legally in Victoria from 30 October 2019, a labour hire provider must:

  • be licensed, or
  • have applied for a licence before 30 October 2019 and the application has not been refused.

A labour hire provider is an individual or organisation that in the course of conducting a business has an arrangement with one or more individuals under which the business:

  • supplies the individuals to perform work in and as part of a host’s business or undertaking and the provider is obliged to pay the individual for performance of the work. This is the general definition of labour hire services (section 7 of the LHL Act).
  • in the course of providing recruitment or placement servicesrecruits individuals for, or places the individuals with a host who has to pay the individuals to perform work in and as part of the host’s business or undertaking and the provider procures or provides accommodation for the individuals for some or all of the period that they are working with the host. This is an extended definition of labour hire services relating to recruitment and placement services (section 8(1) of the LHL Act).
  • in the course of conducting contractor management services recruits the individuals as independent contractors to perform work in and as part of a host’s business or undertaking and manages the contract performance by the independent contractors. This is an extended definition of labour hire services relating to contractor management services(section 8(2) of the LHL Act.

Industries where the supply of workers is taken to be labour hire

Under the Labour Hire Licensing Regulations 2018 (Vic.), there are also some circumstances in which an individual is taken to ‘perform work in and as part of a business or undertaking’.

Who is a labour hire worker?

Workers are generally individuals employed and paid by labour hire providers and supplied to host businesses such as farms, meat manufacturing establishments, meat processing establishments, poultry processing establishments, factories, commercial stores and offices 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 LHL Act 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 LHL Act 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 LHL Act and the LHL Regulations, such as certain secondees or students, will not be regarded as labour hire providers and will not be required to be licensed. See our page on excluded classes of workers for further information.  

Note: a business need only supply one worker to a host to be a labour hire provider.

The transition period

The transition period set out in the LHL Act has now finished.

Labour hire providers had six months from 29 April 2019 to register online and apply for a licence to continue operating in Victoria.

Individuals and organisations that did not apply for a licence within the six-month transition period must not provide labour hire services from 30 October 2019. Unlicensed providers providing labour hire services or advertising that they provide labour hire services face substantial fines, with maximum penalties exceeding $120,000 for a natural person and $500,000 for a corporation.

Hosts who enter into an arrangement after 29 October 2019 with a labour hire provider who has not applied for, or who has been refused a labour hire licence face substantial fines ranging from a maximum penalties exceeding $120,000 for a natural person and $500,000 for a corporation.

How do I obtain a licence?

Providers can now apply through the LHLO portal accessed from the home page of this website.

Applications will require a range of information including:

  • full name, address and date of birth of the applicant
  • 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 or, if the applicant is not yet but intends to conduct a labour hire business, then the number of workers the applicant expects to supply to hosts in the next 12 months
  • the industrial instruments that determine (or will determine) the terms and conditions of employment or engagement of those workers
  • whether those workers hold (or will 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.

You can find a summary of the information that will be required to complete the application form in our application guides.

Note: personal information about individuals is requested for purposes including to enable national police checks. For more details refer to the Labour Hire Authority Privacy Policy.

Fit and proper person test

The 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 LHL Act at the time the application is made if they have within the last:

If you are uncertain about meeting the fit and proper person test, you should seek legal advice.

An applicant will need to declare that, to their knowledge, they comply with:

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 to comply with the above laws and submit this to the Labour Hire Authority on request.

Accommodation and Transport

Applicants will be required to tell the Authority if any relevant person involved in the labour hire business intends to procure or provide accommodation or transport in connection with the labour hire service.

Applicants will also need to declare that:  

For more information about your obligations related to accommodation and transport, click the links below:

Licence fees

Licence fees must be paid at application, annually and at licence renewal.

Please visit the Licence costs and fees page for more information.

Annual reporting

Licensed labour hire providers are required to report every 12 months on their labour hire activities for the previous 12 months to improve transparency and integrity in the labour hire industry and monitor compliance.

Please visit the Annual reporting page for more information.

Monitoring the licensing scheme

The Labour Hire Authority has a team of inspectors whose role is to promote, monitor, investigate and enforce compliance with the Act and regulations.  

Inspectors have a variety of powers to allow them to monitor compliance with the scheme including, where there are reasonable grounds, the power 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.

Report a problem

The Labour Hire Authority works in partnership with other State and Commonwealth agencies to protect the rights and entitlements of labour hire workers in Victoria. Please visit the report a problem page on this website if you would like to report a problem to the Authority.

Please contact Translating and Interpreting Service (TIS National) on 131 450 if you need help with translating the form below.

Further resources

See our Resources page for full details.

The information on this website is based on the Labour Hire Licensing Act 2018 (Vic.) (the LHL Act) and the Labour Hire Licensing Regulations 2018 (Vic.) (the LHL Regulations) and provides details of the labour hire licensing scheme.

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