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Does an Employment Contract Override an Award - Silicon Institute

When it comes to the relationship between an employment contract and an award, many workers are understandably confused. After all, what happens if the two documents contradict each other?

The short answer is that an employment contract can override an award, but only in certain circumstances.

First, let`s define our terms. An employment contract is a legally binding agreement between an employer and an employee that outlines the terms and conditions of their working relationship. An award, on the other hand, is a legal document that outlines the minimum terms and conditions of employment for workers in a particular industry.

So, what happens when there is a conflict between an employment contract and an award?

Under Australian law, an award sets out the minimum terms and conditions of employment for workers in a particular industry. If an employment contract offers less than these minimum standards, then the award prevails.

However, an employment contract can override an award if it offers more generous terms and conditions than the minimum standards set out in the award. For example, an employment contract might provide for a higher rate of pay or more generous leave entitlements than what is set out in the award.

It`s worth noting, though, that employment contracts cannot override certain provisions of an award that are considered “non-negotiable”. These might include things like minimum wages, maximum working hours, and entitlements to breaks and rest periods.

In short, an employment contract can override an award, but only if it provides more generous terms and conditions than what is set out in the award. If it provides less, then the award prevails.

It`s important for workers to be aware of their rights and entitlements under an award, and to ensure that any employment contracts they sign are in line with these minimum standards. If you have any concerns or questions about your employment contract or award, it`s always a good idea to seek legal advice.