July 2022 Blog Posts (8)

A force not to be reckoned with: Requesting health information from employees

A recent decision of the NSW Industrial Relations Commission (NSW IRC) has highlighted one of the pertinent issues currently being faced by employers – that is, to what extent an employer is entitled to require or request an employee provide them with personal medical information.

An employee’s (or any individual’s) health information is generally provided with a higher level of privacy protection under Australia’s privacy laws given its highly personal nature. As a…

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Added by Shane Koelmeyer on July 20, 2022 at 8:00 — No Comments

Stone cold: Court finds that adverse action was taken against employee due to his silica disease diagnosis

The Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) (FW Act) prohibits employers from dismissing an employee from their employment because they have exercised a workplace right or because of a discriminatory reason, such as  physical or mental disability.

In Ruttley v Willis Brothers Installation (Qld) Pty Ltd [2022] FedCFamC2G 430, the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia (the Court) was satisfied that a stone benchtop manufacturer and installer…

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Added by Shane Koelmeyer on July 20, 2022 at 8:00 — No Comments

No points for the assist: Application to vary redundancy pay dismissed

The entitlement to redundancy pay under the National Employment Standards of the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) (the FW Act) is one which is intended to minimise the adverse impact of a redundancy on affected employees, such as loss of job security and the potential difficulties associated with obtaining new employment in the open market.

However, where an employer has taken additional steps to minimise that adverse impact by obtaining “other acceptable employment”…

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Added by Shane Koelmeyer on July 20, 2022 at 8:00 — No Comments

Great expectations: No reasonable expectation of regular and systematic employment for casual employee

An employee will have access to the unfair dismissal jurisdiction if they have completed a minimum employment period of six months (or 12 months for small business employers). Generally, service as a casual employee will not count towards the period of service needed to satisfy the minimum employment period unless they were a regular casual, and they had a reasonable expectation of continuing employment on a regular and systematic basis. 

In Gu v Geraldton Fishermen’s…

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Added by Shane Koelmeyer on July 13, 2022 at 17:34 — No Comments

Supreme failure: Court finds HR manager accessorily liable for adverse action claim

The Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) (FW Act) contains provisions which make it possible for individuals to be found accessorily liable for their involvement in a contravention of a workplace law. In particular, section 550 of the FW Act provides that a person “involved in” a contravention will be taken to have contravened that provision themselves.

It is for this reason that individuals who are most often involved in managing employee relations, such as directors,…

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Added by Shane Koelmeyer on July 6, 2022 at 8:00 — No Comments

No vacancy: making offers of casual conversion

Division 4A of Part 2-2 of the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) (FW Act), which came into operation on 27 March 2021, imposes an obligation on employers of casual employees to make offers of conversion to permanent employment in certain circumstances.

Specifically, employers are required to offer casual employees conversion to permanent employment if:

  • the employee has been employed by the employer for a period of twelve months; and
  • during at…
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Added by Shane Koelmeyer on July 6, 2022 at 8:00 — No Comments

No show cause: Employer’s lack of procedural fairness rendered the dismissal of his employee harsh

Under the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) (FW Act), whether an employee’s dismissal was procedurally fair is a key factor in determining whether the dismissal was unfair. Procedural fairness requires an employee be given an opportunity to respond to or explain an allegation put to them by their employer. The employer must consider that response or explanation before deciding the disciplinary penalty – eg: a warning, or termination of employment.

In Bostock v…

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Added by Shane Koelmeyer on July 6, 2022 at 8:00 — No Comments

Workplace conflict that is not bullying?

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Added by David Sorauer on July 5, 2022 at 17:30 — No Comments

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