Employment Law

Do you understand all your rights and responsibilities?

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Employment law can be complex and confusing, but NS8 Group are here to help. We can advise you of all your legal rights and empower you to take the course of action that suits you best.

As an employer, you have an obligation to comply with all aspects of Australian employment law and ensure your employees can work comfortably in a safe and secure environment – free of bullying, discrimination, and harassment.

The main sources of employment law in Australia are:

  • legislation (federal, state and territory laws);
  • industrial instruments; and
  • the common law.

If you are facing a tough situation at work, it is important to understand your employment rights or employer obligations and the options that are available to you. That is where we can help.

Whether the matter is related to

  • General employment advice
  • Unfair dismissal and wrongful termination
  • Adverse actions and unpaid wage claims
  • Discrimination and harassment claims
  • Redundancy entitlements
  • Contract disputes
  • Termination of Employment
  • Negotiating employee exits
  • Disciplinary investigations
  • Wage and Bonus Disputes
  • Restraints of Trade disputes
  • New Contract Negotiations
  • Partnerships
  • Whistleblowing

NS8 Group is well acquainted with the various employment laws to deliver successful outcomes. Our advice is honest and realistic, and we support this approach by offering fixed fees to assist with decision making throughout the process.

Our strategic mindset when dealing with employment law matters will continue to be the hallmark of our success. We protect your workplace interests.

Industrial
Relations

Industrial relations laws are complex and ever changing. Obtaining specialist legal advice is the first step to making sure you avoid costly mistakes and time-consuming claims later on.

Enterprise
Agreements

From start to finish, and all the way in between, we assist our clients in all industries to work their way through the complex process of negotiating, drafting and obtaining approval of enterprise agreements.

Industrial
Disputes

Industrial action and collective disputes do happen, and when they do, having our specialised industrial relations team on your side can help you resolve unwanted problems and get your business back on track in a timely way.

Executive
Employment

We have significant experience with the issues that executives, directors and senior managers commonly face, and understand how to navigate these to your advantage.

Sexual Harassment Claims

Most sexual harassment cases occur in the workplace. In 2009 to 2010, 21% of Australian Human Rights Commission complaints were sex related and 88% of those occurred in the workplace. However, sexual harassment can happen in public and private settings including schools, universities, sports teams, online or over the phone.

Mental illness and your rights at work

If you have a mental illness, or are working through a psychological injury, you are protected from unlawful discrimination at work by the Fair Work Act. This means your employer is not allowed to take adverse action against you based on a mental health problem or disability.

Some examples of adverse action can include:

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Allowing, or not actively preventing you from getting injured

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Altering your job position or responsibilities to your detriment

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Discriminating between you and your colleagues

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Refusing to pay you

If you think you have been discriminated against because of your mental health, it is recommended that you seek expert legal advice. It’s important to remember though, that actions taken by your employer which impact your job aren’t always discrimination. Under the Fair Work Act, it is not discrimination if the actions are allowed under the relevant anti-discrimination law, or if they are based on the necessary requirements of your job.

Why choose NS8 Group?

We can help. We provide expert advice to employees and employers in all matters relating to employment separation and prosecuting dismissal claims.

Call our Team today. We will help you with your workplace questions.

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Fixed Fees.

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Plain Speak.

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Legal Advice.

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We take care of everything.

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We will represent you at the conciliation conference.

Small business: Consultation requirement

Michael Lyle Jones v Karisma Joinery Pty Ltd [2020] FWC 5051 (25 September 2020)

Facts:
The applicant became verbally abusive to his supervisor on the phone over a workplace matter that occurred during the day. The conversation degenerated into a tirade of abusive and aggressive language which ended up with the applicant calling his supervisor a “f***ing smart ass” and hanging up. The supervisor again rang the applicant where the tirade continued. Within hours the employer issued a Termination letter by email to the applicant. The applicant didn’t receive the email and attended work the following day.

Held:
The applicant’s behaviour warranted dismissal. However, because a Termination letter was issued without discussing the matter with the applicant the employer failed to exercise procedural fairness. As such a financial remedy was awarded to the applicant.

FAQs

FAQ’s are for information purposes only and should not be relied upon as legal advice.

Why Legislation Is Important In The Workplace?

There is legislation that applies to all national system employers across Australia – in other words, to most employers in Australia. This is regardless of territory, states, business model or industry.

The objective of this legislation is to place responsibility on the employer to ensure that their employees are treated fairly and are receiving the minimum employment rights and entitlements for the industry they work in and the job they do within that industry – including minimum pay, leave entitlements, redundancy, periods of notice for termination, and more.

Here is a list of some of the most important workplace relations legislation that governs industrial relations and employment relationships in Australia:


  • Fair Work Act 2009
  • National Employment Standards (NES)
  • Work Health and Safety Standards (WHS)
  • State and Federal anti-discrimination laws
  • Privacy Act 1988
What is workplace discrimination?

Workplace discrimination occurs when an employer takes adverse actions against a worker or potential worker because of a protected attribute. These attributes include things such as:

  • Race
  • Skin colour
  • Sex Sexual orientation
  • Age
  • Physical or mental disability
  • Marital status
  • Pregnancy
  • Religion or political opinion
What is a workplace right?

‘Workplace rights’ is a broad term. It includes being entitled to the benefit of a workplace law such as the Fair Work Act, or relevant workers compensation legislation, and covers any right you have under these laws.

Examples of common workplace rights include the right to:

  • Take sick leave or maternity leave
  • Request flexible working arrangements
  • Commence legal action, or
  • Make a complaint under workplace laws.
What is an adverse action?

In Australia, it is against the law for an employer to take an adverse action against an employee for exercising a workplace right. Adverse actions include dismissing, injuring, discriminating against or altering someone’s position to their disadvantage.

What is redundancy?

Genuine or lawful redundancy occurs when an employer:

  • No longer requires a job to be performed by anyone; or
  • Becomes insolvent or bankrupt.

The redundancy won’t be genuine where the employer:

  • Still needs someone to perform the job.
  • Could have reasonably redeployed the employee within the Employer’s enterprise or within an associated entity of the Employer, or
  • Didn’t meet its obligation to consult in relation to the redundancy, as required by an Enterprise Agreement or Modern Award.
What Rights Do Employers Have In The Workplace?

As an employer, you have few rights other than to expect employees to carry out their duties to a reasonable standard, follow reasonable management directions, and abide by their contract and workplace policies and procedures. However, you have a number of obligations and responsibilities towards your employees under the Fair Work Act and other industrial relations legislation..

Some of the most important responsibilities to consider include:

  • provide a safe working environment
  • protect all employees from bullying, discrimination, and sexual harassment
  • provide employees with the correct pay and entitlements
  • record keeping obligations
  • give all employees the necessary training, resources, and mentoring they need to work safely and efficiently
  •  inform all employees of their rights and responsibilities
  • train employees on potential hazards and safety risks in the workplace
  •  meet first aid requirements
  • report workplace incidents and injuries to Safe Work Australia
  • supply protective clothing and equipment for employees and ensure they know how to use them correctly.

To stay informed of your rights and responsibilities as an employer, seek advice from a workplace relations specialist such as NS8 Group. We can inform you about your current rights and update you on changes to legislation that may apply to your business.

What can I do if my rights have been adversely affected?

If you believe your rights as a worker have been breached, there are several avenues for assistance available. Contact NS8 Group today.