Bookkeepers who have contemplated whether to split casual loading as a separate line on a payslip have been provided with some clarity by the Fair Work Ombudsman.
On their website, the payslip web page has now been updated to include the line, “For example, a note could be included on a payslip that the hourly rate incorporates the relevant casual loading”.
Speaking to The Bookkeeper, Laurus Bookkeeping director Cassandra Scott said the latest update has helped settle a contentious issue for the industry.
“I think there has been a lot of phone calls to Fair Work for clarification because there’s been two very strong positions in the bookkeeping industry that say it is non-negotiable and it must be split out into two lines, and there’s the other side that says Fair Work doesn’t say that and as long as it is identified on the payslip that there is a base rate and a loading applied to, it meets the requirements,” Ms Scott said.
“A lot of people interpreted that you needed to have the casual loading as a separate pay item on payslips.
“A lot of the recommendations coming out from the professional associations were suggesting that, to make sure your bum was absolutely protected, that was probably what you needed to do.”
She added: “There are pros and cons on both sides of having it split out or not having it split out, but there is now no blanket requirement that says it must be split out, and that’s the crux of the discussion.”
In an online update, the Institute of Certified Bookkeepers said that it was an “interesting change” from the FWO but warned bookkeepers to detail everything in writing.
“It does change the specific requirement in payslip disclosure and provides clarity about what a payslip must include,” the ICB said.
“However, as shown in recent court actions including the case that has caused all the furore over casual conversion, it remains extremely important to have the agreement in writing stating what someone is being paid, explicitly stating what they are being paid as their base rate and any other allowances or pay components the person is entitled to.”