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Upcoming changes to the regulator of registered organisations

On 2 December 2022, legislation was passed by ParliamentExternal link (opens in new window) to abolish the Registered Organisations Commission (ROC) and transfer all of its functions to the Fair Work Commission (FWC).

It is important to understand that this does not change the ongoing compliance obligations of registered organisations under the Fair Work (Registered Organisations) Act 2009 (the RO Act). 

The RO Act is being changed to transfer all the obligations and responsibilities of registered organisations that are currently regulated by the ROC to the FWC. These changes will come into effect no later than 6 June 2023, or an earlier date to be proclaimed by the Minister.

Up until the day of the change, the ROC will continue to be the regulator, after which the FWC will assume the regulatory functions.

Registered organisations need to continue to meet their compliance obligations

It is important that registered organisations continue to comply with their record-keeping, reporting and other compliance obligations both now and into the future. The new legislation continues the ROC’s focus on encouraging good governance in organisations, to see them consistently act in the best interests of their members. 

Statutory lodgements such as financial reports, annual returns of information, officer and related party disclosure statements, statements of loans, grants and donations, notifications of change and prescribed information for the conduct of elections must continue to be lodged with the ROC by the required due dates. 

Officers of registered organisations with financial duties must continue to undertake approved financial governance training within six months of taking office or apply for an exemption from training from the Registered Organisations Commissioner.

What if I need help with my obligations?

The ROC will continue to assist organisations, including to navigate through any period of change, to ensure each organisation can meet its obligations under the RO Act. 

The ROC’s employees will be transferring to the FWC, so you will continue to have contact with the action officers you are familiar with.

Your office holders, branches and teams can access a broad range of helpful tools, tips, templates and other education material on our website.

How will I know when the regulator changes?

The ROC will clearly communicate changes by email, on our website and through our subscription serviceExternal link (opens in new window). The FWC will also communicate with registered organisations when it is appropriate to do so.

What will happen with any ongoing matters my organisation has with the ROC?

The ROC will work with registered organisations and the FWC to ensure a seamless transition of the regulatory functions of the RO Act and a transfer of any ongoing matters.

Registered organisations will be advised of new email addresses and other contact details for the regulator.