Pro rata means in proportion. For the purposes of Long Service Leave (LSL), a pro rata entitlement is a proportion of the entitlement the employee would have received if they had worked until the end of the period required for LSL.

Employees who leave or have been dismissed from a workplace prior to meeting the minimum period of service required to take LSL may be entitled to a proportionate LSL payment after a specified period of service.

Some examples of when an employee’s domestic or other pressing necessity would be considered a legitimate reason for their resignation include:

  • a parent or pregnant employee leaving work to care for one or more children;
  • changing jobs to lessen travel expenses when in a difficult financial situation;
  • taking a higher paid job to cope with increased financial commitments;
  • leaving a job because the night shift was a strain on the employee’s family relationships and repeated requests for a transfer to the day shift had not been met;
  • leaving employment because the employer was relocating and the employee would have been required to travel for 2 or more hours each way to and from work;
  • leaving employment because of stress resulting from increased workplace responsibilities, where the employee can show that an illness is the cause of termination of employment;
  • leaving employment because of an illness or incapacity that the employee considers is the cause of pain, discomfort or irritation sufficient to justify the termination of employment; and
  • leaving work to take care of a sick family or household member.

In the case of illness or incapacity, a doctor’s certificate will usually substantiate a claim. If you are in doubt, request a doctor’s certificate to verify the existence and seriousness of the employee’s illness, or the illness of the employee’s immediate family or household member.

How can LSL be taken in NSW?

Whether an employee can take LSL as continuous or separate periods is determined by the relevant State or Territory legislation.

In NSW as one continuous period or, by agreement between the employer and employee:

  • in two separate periods if the LSL entitlement is 2 months;
  • in up to three separate periods if the LSL entitlement is between 2 months and 19.5 weeks; or
  • in up to four separate periods if the LSL entitlement is greater than 19.5 weeks

Need Help?

If you have a query regarding long service leave and require assistance, please contact one of our Tax Accountants on (02) 9223 9166 to discuss. Alternatively, you can submit an online enquiry form.