Daylight saving ends this Sunday: is payroll affected?

Daylight saving ends this Sunday: is payroll affected?
By Paul Munro on 26 March 2018 Daylight saving will finish in New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia, Tasmania and the Australian Capital Territory on Sunday 1 April 2018, when clocks go back one hour at 3am (to 2 am).

Daylight saving is not observed in Queensland, Western Australia or the Northern Territory. The same is the case in the Australian dependence of Christmas Island, Cocos Island and Norfolk Island.

Some years ago, the respective governments of NSW, Victoria, South Australia, Tasmania and the ACT agreed to synchronise their daylight saving hours. This means that, for future summers, daylight saving in these states and the ACT begins at 2am Eastern Standard Time (Central Standard Time South Australia) on the first Sunday in October and ends at 3am Eastern Daylight Saving Time (Central Daylight Saving Time South Australia) on the first Sunday in April.

Re-commencement of daylight saving


Daylight saving will begin again in NSW, Victoria, South Australia, Tasmania and the Australian Capital Territory on Sunday 7 October 2018 when clocks will go forward one hour at 2am.

Payment when clock changes


What does an employer pay a night shift worker or an employee working overtime when the clock is set back one hour when daylight saving ends?

Over the years, the position with respect to work performed during the change of hours when daylight saving ceases has been considered by industrial tribunals, with an employee to be paid by the clock. This means that when the clock is put back one hour on Sunday 1 April 2018 an employee works nine hours but is only paid for eight hours. See: Re Daylight Saving and Shift Work (1971) AR (NSW) 887.

However, a common practice among employers is to have a policy of not disadvantaging an employee in any way by the time change.

Such a company policy may provide that an employee receives nine hours pay, or an employee receives one hour’s credit or, if the hours are overtime, nine hours overtime at the appropriate penalty rate.

In the absence of a specific provision in the applicable modern award, enterprise agreement or company policy, an employer is only required to pay an employee eight hours pay for nine hours worked.

12-hour shifts – Workplace health and safety consideration


An employer who operates a continuous 12-hour shift operation should also consider fatigue management for those shift workers who would be required to effectively work a 13-hour shift with the ending of daylight saving.

Overseas countries


For those employers with customers or business premises located overseas, the following are the relevant dates in those major trading countries that have daylight saving:
  • Great Britain – British summer time commences on Sunday 25 March 2018 at 1am and ceases on 28 October 2018 at 2am
  • United States and Canada – for those states with daylight saving, daylight saving commences on Sunday 11 March 2018 at 2am and ceases on Sunday 4 November 2018 at 2am
  • European Union and rest of Europe – daylight saving commences on Sunday 25 March 2018 at 1am and ceases on Sunday 28 October 2018 at 1am. Armenia, Belarus, Georgia, Iceland, Russia and Turkey do not observe daylight saving and remain on standard time.
  • New Zealand – daylight saving ends on Sunday 1 April 2018 at 3am and commences on Sunday 23 September 2018 at 2am.
Major trading countries in Asia, including China, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, Indonesia and Taiwan, do not observe daylight saving.

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