Quick Reference Guide: Employee Dismissal

For those Employers who are in a position to have to let staff go due to the CVOID-19 Pandemic, here’s some information that will help you get through this difficult time as efficiently and lawfully as possible.  It’s never pleasant, we recognise that and understand that completely.  During this difficult time, compassion and care is paramount in our minds to you, our valued Community.  Of course, if you’re not sure or require clarification or assistance, we are here to help you.

Firstly, please call us. Let us help you objectively run through your options and think creatively about how we could avoid this. We can plan with you. You can also talk to your Employees, see if they can take their annual leave entitlements, work reduced hours, go part-time. Let’s chat and decide together on a course of action.

If you do decide you have to let people go, your obligations to your employee is to provide a final pay which includes:

  • Any outstanding wages for hours they have worked, including penalty rates and allowances;
  • Any accumulated annual leave and/or loading that they maybe entitled to under their contract or agreement.
  • And, if it applies, any redundancy pay, long service leave, payments in lieu.

Most Awards say that employers need to pay employees their final payment within 7 days of the employment ending, Contracts, EAs and other instruments may also specify this, so check your files.

It would also help your employee to issue them with a Separation Certificate so they can access any Department of Human Services benefits quickly and easily.

Here’s a link to the form you can complete and provide to your employee(s) immediately:


To assist you down this path, Fair Work has some great resources available to you.  Here’s some shortcuts to make your life easier.

Calculating Final Pay

Click here for the Pay Calculator to find your Award and Pay Rate.

Click here if you’re covered by an Enterprise Agreement, you can find your Agreement here.

Click here to calculate any outstanding leave entitlements.


Notice and redundancy

Whether an employee quits or is fired, notice is generally required.

Most awards say that an employer can deduct up to one week’s wages from an employee’s pay if:

  • the employee is over 18
  • the employee hasn’t given the right amount of notice under their award
  • the deduction isn’t unreasonable.

However, employers can only deduct pay from wages owed under the award. They can’t deduct from other entitlements owed to the employee, such as accumulated leave or other over award payments.

Click here to calculate how much notice and redundancy is owed to your employee.

For a full breakdown of information you require to manage your workforce, click here.

If you’re a small business, click here for your Guide to dismiss employees.