Australia: New laws regulating the labour-hire industry likely in Victoria following introduction of similar schemes in Queensland and South Australia

The Labour Hire Licensing Bill 2017 (Vic) has passed Victoria’s lower house, but requires votes from two of the five minor parties in the upper house to become law. As it stands, the Bill would require operators to pass a “fit and proper” person test and establish a Labour Hire Licensing Authority and Office of Labour Hire Licensing Commissioner.

South Australia passed a similar Act in November of last year, introducing a mandatory licensing scheme for labour-hire operators. Under the new South Australian laws, it is also unlawful for employers to engage an unlicensed operator.

Queensland passed the first labour-hire licensing bill in the country in July 2017. The Queensland legislation requires businesses looking to hire staff to use a registered labour-hire provider. It also obliges labour-hire operators to pass a “fit and proper person” test, and gives inspectors the power to police the industry.

The Australian Labor Party holds office in all three states where legislation regulating the labour-hire industry has been introduced to date.