On 24 September 2020, the Federal Court ruled that Qantas misinterpreted S 789GDA of the Fair Work Act when calculating JobKeeper payments. This is a landmark win for ASU members at Qantas.

The ASU, along with the Flight Attendants Association of Australia and the Transport Workers Union, brought the case after Qantas short-changed employees over penalty rates earned on the Easter long weekend. Qantas minimised the amounts paid to employees by counting penalties paid on a later payday towards the $1500 JobKeeper payment for that later fortnight.

Justice Flick’s ruling is that only moneys that are both earned for work in a particular JobKeeper fortnight and paid in that same fortnight can be counted towards the minimum payment guarantee.

This is in many ways a better outcome than we thought possible.

It means that if you are not paid for the work you perform in one JobKeeper fortnight in the same fortnight, then that money cannot be counted towards JobKeeper for any fortnight.

This decision impacts on every employer making JobKeeper payments to employees.

Qantas has 28 days to appeal this decision. We’ll fight this all the way if we need to.

The ASU is calling on Qantas to accept the Federal Court’s decision, and not appeal.

This is money stood down Qantas workers desperately need. Qantas should do the right thing by its workers and promise to pay you what you are owed as soon as possible.

This is money that Qantas workers will spend in their local businesses, helping our economy to bounce back as soon as possible.

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