Stage 4 restrictions and your business

Under the Stage 4 restrictions, there are new requirements for businesses. Certain services and industries will be able to remain operational and will be required by law to have a COVID Safe Plan.

For information on the latest restrictions and to understand if your business can open under Stage 4 restrictions, visit the DHHS website.

Employer obligations

Under the Stage 4 restrictions, workplaces that remain open must:

  • have a COVID Safe Plan in place that is regularly updated (unless you are a small business with fewer than 5 employees)
  • ensure that any workers that can work from home are able to do so
  • collect records of all workers, subcontractors, customers and clients attending the work premises for 15 minutes or longer (certain exemptions will apply)
  • one worker per four square metres of enclosed workspace or in shared areas
  • unless an exemption applies, ensure that workers do not work across multiple sites, or for multiple employers
  • ensure that workers are in good health - workers cannot work if they are unwell and employers must not require workers with symptoms to work
  • if your worker is unwell, send them home and direct them to be tested. They must stay home until they have their result
  • report any positive cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) to DHHS, Worksafe, Health and Safety Representatives, and notify your workforce
  • regularly clean your facilities, shared spaces and provide additional cleaning supplies
  • undertake risk assessments for cleaning and the potential closure of your workplace in certain situations

Your COVID Safe Plan

Your COVID Safe Plan helps protect your workers, customers and visitors and to prepare for a suspected or confirmed case of coronavirus (COVID-19) in your workplace. Your COVID Safe Plan must set out:

  • Your actions to help prevent the introduction of coronavirus (COVID-19) in your workplace
  • The level of face-covering or personal protective equipment (PPE) required for your workforce
  • How you will prepare for, and respond to, a suspected or confirmed case of coronavirus (COVID-19) in your workplace
  • This plan must demonstrate how you will meet all of the requirements set out by the Victorian Government. Some higher-risk industries or workplaces have additional requirements of employers and employees.

For more information and COVID Safe Plan templates, visit the Business Victoria website.

Permitted worker permit

From 11:59pm on Wednesday 5 August, employers that require their staff to attend a work site must issue a worker permit to their employees – this is the employer’s responsibility.

Penalties of up to $19,826 (for individuals) and $99,132 (for businesses) will apply to employers who issue worker permits to employees who do not meet the requirements of the worker permit scheme or who otherwise breach the scheme requirements.

There will also be on-the-spot fines of up to $1,652 (for individuals) and up to $9,913 (for businesses) for anyone who breaches the scheme requirements. This includes employers, and employees who do not carry their worker permit when travelling to and from work.

For more information and to download a template for the permit, visit https://www.justice.vic.gov.au/permitted-worker-scheme