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This is a letter asking an employer for flexible work arrangements in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. It is designed for employees who have a child or children to care for.
This can be used by employees who have already discussed this matter with their employer and just want to formalise it in writing, or by employees who are raising it for the first time. Either way, it is a good practice to put this request in writing (even if verbal approval has already been provided) to avoid any disputes later on.
Under workplace health and safety laws, employers are required to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the health and safety of their workers and others at the workplace. Therefore, if an employee thinks it is reasonably practicable for them to alter their work arrangements, in order to minimise the risk of coronavirus, then this letter can help them to organise that.
If an employee is seeking flexible work arrangements in response to the coronavirus, but they do not have children to care for, then consider using our Letter Requesting Flexible Work Due to COVID-19/Coronavirus.
This letter is not designed for use by an employee who is seeking annual leave or parental leave from work. For annual leave situations, use our Letter Requesting Annual Leave. For parental leave situations, use our Letter Requesting Parental Leave.
If an employee has a suspected or confirmed case of coronavirus, and needs to notify their employer, use our Letter to Employer about Suspected COVID-19/Coronavirus.
How to use this document
If the employee has already obtained verbal permission for the flexible work arrangements, use this letter to record the details of what has been agreed, and what the employee plans to do. For example, enter the relevant details to confirm whether the employee is proposing to work full time from home, or whether they are proposing to alter the times that they attend the workplace. If the employee is also proposing to put any other measures in place (such as regular calls or reports to their supervisor) details of these arrangements can also be included.
If the employee has not yet obtained verbal permission for the flexible work arrangements, use this letter to outline the employee's request.
The letter can then be printed, signed, and handed to a supervisor. It can also be downloaded and attached to an email.
Each state and territory has legislation in relation to work health and safety. Further information is available from Safe Work Australia.
The Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) and the National Employment Standards apply to most employment situations in Australia.
However, in addition, many employment situations are also governed by modern awards or enterprise agreements.
In addition, general principles of contract law, as provided by the common law, will apply to any employment contract.
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