Category: Blog

Work Abandonment

Clarification of Abandonment of Employment

We often have enquiries from clients about the issue of abandonment of employment; where a staff member has not turned up for a shift or shifts and not provided any notification or reason for the absence. In some cases, employers have been premature in acting to dismiss that staff member for reasons of abandonment. In these cases, these have often resulted in unfair dismissal. When there’s possible abandonment of employment, we advise clients to tread very cautiously. Abandonment of employment is a complicated and risky area, and employers should not

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No Let Up by Fair Work Ombudsman During COVID Crisis

Whilst many businesses are closed and some struggling to stay in business during the COVID crisis, there seems to be no relaxation from the Fair Work Ombudsman (FWO) in pursuing and prosecuting businesses for the underpayment of wages.

Here are a few recent examples: The first matter involves the operators of three Din Tai Fung outlets have been accused of underpaying staff and providing false records to the FWO. The FWO has commenced legal action

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EWS Covid-19

Impact of COVID-19 What to do with Staff Moving Forward?

As the coronavirus devastates businesses and the economy, employers are being faced with the difficult decision as to what they can do with staffing levels as business returns to trading levels that are, in many instances, much less than those experienced prior to March this year. The other complicating factor is the reduction in the applicability of JobKeeper and what are your labour costs v turnover going to look like in the next 6-12 months. What options are available to businesses if they need to reduce staffing levels, reduce staffing hours or make people redundant? 

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EWS Court Ruling

High Court Overrules Federal Courts Sick Leave Decision

A Win for Common Sense

The High Court has issued its determination in the contentious sick leave matter that was initially decided by the Federal Court last year (the “Mondelez” or “Cadbury” case).

The High Court (4-1 in favour) overruled the decision of the Full Federal Court in this case, finding that employees are entitled to 10 “notional days” of personal leave per year by reference to their ordinary working hours. The Federal Court’s view was that 10 days of personal leave entitles all employees regardless of their actual working hours. Under the High Court’s decision, employees are entitled to

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Resized Judge And Gavle

Australia’s First Industrial Manslaughter Case Decided – A Wake Up Call for Employers

There has been a landmark verdict in Queensland’s first prosecution of a company for industrial manslaughter.

A Brisbane scrap metal yard (Brisbane Auto Recycling Pty Ltd) has been fined $3 million and its two directors sentenced to 10 months imprisonment, wholly suspended,  for industrial manslaughter, for reckless conduct after a worker was hit by a reversing forklift and later died from his injuries.

The offence of industrial manslaughter was introduced in Queensland in October 2017 and, since then, almost all other Australian states and territories have moved to introduce similar legislation.

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