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If you are dismissed (sacked) you are generally entitled to be given notice before you have to stop working, unless you were dismissed because of serious misconduct. The minimum period of notice depends on how long you have worked for your employer. Your award, enterprise agreement or contract could entitle you to a greater period of notice.
If you have been dismissed, you should get legal advice. Your dismissal may have been unfair or in breach of a general protection. For more information about unfair dismissal and general protections dismissal, see the 'Employment rights' page.
Length of employment
Minimum period of notice
One year or less
Three years or less, but more than one year
Five years or less, but more than three years
More than five years
Not all employees are entitled to notice. For example, casual employees may not be entitled to notice. You should get
legal advice if you have been dismissed and you are not sure how much notice you are entitled to.
You are entitled to an extra week's notice if you are over 45 years old and you have at least two years of continuous service with your employer.
Instead of giving you the required period of notice, your employer can pay you an amount equal to your wages for the period of notice you are entitled to, and ask you to leave straight away. This is called a payment in lieu of notice. The amount owing is equal to the amount payable for the notice period that you are entitled to.
If you resign you may also have to give notice. Your employment contract, award or enterprise agreement may set out the notice period. In some cases if you don't give enough notice your employer may be able to keep some of your final pay.
For more information, see Resignation - how much notice? on the Fair Work Ombudsman website.
If your employer decides to pay you in lieu of notice, you will normally receive this payment with your final termination pay.
You should be paid your full rate of pay for the hours you would have worked until the end of the notice period. Your full rate of pay includes any overtime, penalty rates, allowances, bonuses or commissions you would have normally earned over that period. Your employer can deduct amounts for tax.
If you are not paid or you haven't been paid the right amount, there are steps you can take to try and recover the money that you are entitled to. For more information, see
What if my entitlements are not paid?