New COVID-19 Regulations for Employers

31 Jul 2020

FCIA's legal team have advised us of the following regulations which came into effect in Victoria on 28th July 2020. At the moment this regulation applies only in Victoria however FCIA strongly believes that all Australian employers should anticipate that this may have some flow-on effect to other States / Territories.

Our lawyers have confirmed the following:

  • To be on the safe side, Members should use the widest possible definition of an employee or contractor - including assuming your home is your workplace (in the case of sole traders, employers working from home etc.)
  • Members should be proactive and professional and notify their state authorities if they become aware of an active COVID-19 case under their authority - the last thing we want is a Member's reputation ruined by an infected installer transmitting the infection in someone's home or public place.
  • Non-Victorian Members should regularly check their equivalent WorkCover / Work Health and Safety websites to keep informed about their state/Territory Public Health orders.

FCIA will be constantly updated by our lawyers and we will endeavour to assist Members to address this issue. Bearing in mind that the FCIA are not legal professionals we will do our best to keep you posted and assist you with you specific circumstances. Please contact us on or Garry Thomas on 0420 921 396.

The new Victorian Regulations, made under VIC's Occupational Health and Safety Act, require that Employers are required to notify WorkSafe immediately on becoming aware that an employee or an independent contractor or a contractor's employee has received a confirmed coronavirus (COVID-19) diagnosis and has attended the workplace during the infectious period.

Self-employed persons are also required to directly inform WorkSafe immediately on receiving a confirmed coronavirus (COVID-19) diagnosis if they have attended the workplace during the infectious period.

  • The infectious period begins on the date 14 days prior to the onset of symptoms or a confirmed diagnosis (whichever comes first), until the day on which the person receives a clearance from isolation from the Department of Health and Human Services.
  • Failing to notify WorkSafe under section 38 of the OHS Act can lead to fines of up to $39,652 (240 penalty units) for an individual or $198,264 (1200 penalty units) for a body corporate.
  • The new Regulations came into force on 28 July 2020 and will remain in place for 12 months.
  • To notify WorkSafe of a positive coronavirus (COVID-19) diagnosis, employers or self-employed persons should call the WorkSafe advisory service on 13 23 60.

For Victorian Members more information can be found by visiting the Victorian WorkCover website.