As a result of the dreaded drop in temperature on the Gold Coast, you may have noticed that the health of your family has also taken a turn for the worst, and that colds and sniffles abound.
Unfortunately, an increase in illness often means that busy parents need to take time off work in order to care for their sick child or children, and many don’t know what their entitlements are in relation to taking time off work to care for others.
While most employers are understanding when it comes to these matters, it pays to know what your rights and entitlements are, particularly if you are faced with an employer who is less than empathetic when it comes to taking time off.
So what are your rights in relation to taking time off to look after sick children?
Under workplace laws, employees certainly have a right to take time off to care for their children and generally speaking, working parents are entitled to a minimum of 10 days’ paid sick or carer’s leave each year, which can be taken should the employee fall ill, or for the employee to care for immediate family members, or members of their household who are sick, injured or who have suffered an unexpected emergency.
Leave entitlements accumulate from year to year, however, if you have exhausted all of your sick leave entitlements, you are also entitled to an additional two days of unpaid carer’s leave each time a child (or immediate family members, or members of your household) is ill.
It is important to remember that your employer can ask for evidence of your illness/injury, or the need to provide care or support to an immediate family or household member (because of an illness, injury, or unexpected emergency affecting the member), and if no evidence is provided, then you may not be eligible to receive sick/carers leave.
The current Fair Work laws are in place to provide working parents with flexible arrangements to assist with juggling their multiple responsibilities.
If you think that your employer has made a mistake in calculating your sick leave entitlements, or if you need advice on how to resolve a workplace issue, please contact one of our friendly Gold Coast employment lawyers for a consultation on 07 5563 8970.