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Christmas shutdown: can you work for someone else?

Can an employee work for another company during our shutdown over Christmas?
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Christmas shutdown: can you work for someone else?

Christmas shutdown: can you work for someone else?

18 November 2019

Can an employee work for another company during our shutdown over Christmas?

Our Workplace Advice Line recently received this question from a Workplace Assured subscriber.

One of our employees is taking four weeks’ annual leave over the Christmas break. We have discovered that he intends to work for another employer during this time, albeit not a competitor.

The company believes that employees should use any paid leave to enjoy a break from work. Can we tell the employee he cannot work for another employer during his annual leave?
 

A The conditions relating to annual leave are regulated by the Fair Work Act (FWAct).
 
Annual leave – National Employment Standard (NES)
 
In the absence of a specific provision in the FWAct on this issue, an employee is able to work for another employer while on a period of annual leave, provided the work performed with the second employer does not conflict in any way with the business interests of the first employer.

The NES does not imply any control by the first employer over the activities of an employee while on annual leave.

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