This Part provides for the FWC to make, vary and revoke modern awards. Modern
awards may set minimum terms and conditions for national system employees in
particular industries or occupations. Modern awards can have terms that are
ancillary or supplementary to the National Employment Standards (see
Division 2 provides for the modern awards objective. This requires the
FWC to ensure that modern awards, together with the National Employment
Standards, provide a fair and relevant minimum safety net of terms and
conditions, taking into account certain social and economic factors.
Division 2 also contains special provisions about modern award minimum
Division 3 deals with the terms of modern awards.
Division 4 provides for the FWC to conduct 4 yearly reviews of modern
awards (other than in relation to default fund terms of modern awards).
Division 4A provides for the FWC to conduct 4 yearly reviews of default
fund terms of modern awards.
It also sets out the process for making the Schedule of Approved Employer
MySuper products in a 4 yearly review, and amending the schedule after it is
made to include other employer MySuper products. If an employer MySuper
product is on the schedule, an employer covered by a modern award can make
contributions, for the benefit of a default fund employee, to a superannuation
fund that offers the product (see subsection 149D(1A)).
Division 5 provides for the FWC to exercise modern award powers outside
the system of 4 yearly reviews in certain circumstances.
Division 6 contains some general provisions relating to modern award
Division 7 contains additional provisions relating to modern enterprise
Division 8 contains additional provisions relating to State reference
public sector modern awards.
The obligation to comply with a modern award is in section 45 (in
In relation to minimum wages in modern awards, the FWC has powers both under
this Part and under Part 2-6 (which deals with minimum wages). The
following is a summary of the FWC's powers under the 2 Parts:
(a) the initial making of a modern award setting modern award
minimum wages can only occur under this Part;
(b) the main power to vary modern award minimum wages is in annual
wage reviews under Part 2-6;
(c) modern award minimum wages can also be varied under this Part,
but only for work value reasons or in other limited circumstances;
(d) modern award minimum wages can be set (otherwise than in the
initial making of a modern award) or revoked either under this Part or in
annual wage reviews under Part 2-6.