Casual retail workers receive penalty rate rise


The SDA Union for Retail, Fast Food and Warehousing workers has won a major case in the Fair Work Commission that will result in a boost to penalty rates for casual retail staff working weeknights and Saturdays. More than 350,000 casual retail workers will receive increased penalty rates from November this year following a FWC full bench decision.


Currently, casuals working on Saturdays receive 135 per cent of the base rate, which includes a 25 per cent casual loading and 10 per cent in penalty payments. Permanent and part-time workers receive a 25 per cent penalty rate. The decision will ensure that casual workers will also receive this 25 per cent penalty rate and a 15 per cent loading for employees working after 6pm on weekdays by 2020.


The changes will be implemented in three stages, the first of which will begin just before the Christmas period this year.

  • From 1 November 2018, casual retail employees must be paid an additional 15 per cent for all work performed on Saturdays and an additional 5 per cent for hours worked after 6pm on weekdays. This will be non-inclusive of their casual loadings.
  • By 1 October 2019, casuals must receive an additional 20 per cent on Saturdays and 10 per cent for weeknights.
  • By March 2020, casual employees must be paid 25 per cent in penalty rates on Saturdays and 15 per cent for hours worked after 6pm.


The Fair Work Commission also decided to begin reducing Sunday rates for both permanent and casual shift workers by 25 per cent. Currently, Sunday shift worker rates for permanent shift workers are 200 per cent and 225 per cent for casual shift workers.


For advice regarding penalty pay rates, please contact us on (08) 9316 9896 or


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Marisa Ross

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Marisa is an experienced and motivated HR professional with a strong HR generalist and business operations background with a focus on employee relations, performance management, leadership training & development, workers compensation & injury management, and employee retention. Marisa holds a Bachelor of Human Resource Management and a Bachelor of Behavioural Science with a minor in Counselling. Having worked in a variety of industries from SMEs to large blue-chip organisations, Marisa is passionate about enriching employee experience, employee retention, and building leadership capability in people management.

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Aimee Grigson

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