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As Australians emerge from lengthy lockdowns and are making their way back to the workplace, we are expecting a number of companies to hold their end of year work Christmas party as a way to reconnect their staff before the new year. In this alert, we explore the various ways employers can mitigate the risk associated with work Christmas parties and safeguard the business especially in the era of COVID-19.
Despite considerable uncertainty over job security over the last 18 months, ironically, the last several months has seen a global trend of mass resignations.
We examine what has been termed in the United States, “the Great Resignation”, and whether those voluntary resignation trends can be expected to manifest in Australia.
Following the introduction of Health Orders by NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard imposing requirements on workers in a number of industries to be COVID-19 vaccinated, a total of ten workers across various sectors challenged the validity of these orders in the Supreme Court of NSW.
It is a question that comes up more frequently than one might think. That is, if an employee works for the same or a related entity over a number of years in different states and even countries, does all their service count for the purposes of long service leave?
With Australia’s push to increase COVID-19 vaccinations, there are real questions emerging in relation to whether an employer can mandate COVID-19 vaccinations in the workplace. We examine whether an employer can force COVID-19 vaccinations in the workplace, and the implications for employees.
Most people believe restraints are not enforceable. However, this is far from the truth.
In this client alert, we examine the mechanics of restraints and their enforceability.
In a significant win for employers, the High Court has handed down its decision overturning the Full Federal Court decision in WorkPac Pty Ltd v Rossato  FCAFC 84 which permitted casual employees to receive the 25% casual loading and nonetheless claim paid service entitlements only applicable to permanent staff, where certain conditions applied.
The High Court decision now squarely aligns with the newly introduced casuals provisions in the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) which took effect on 27 March 2021. These legislative amendments affirmed that if agreed under terms of an employment contract, a casual employment relationship that mutually acknowledges no firm commitment to an ongoing working relationship or a regular pattern of work between employer and employee, will be sufficient to curtail any subsequent claims for service related entitlements enjoyed by permanent staff provided the parties observe the terms of the casual contract.
From Sunday, 18 July 2021, most workplaces in Greater Sydney have been declared closed to the public. This lockdown has now expanded to parts of regional NSW and other capital cities.
This means that many employers have had to stand down some or all their employees under the current lockdown restrictions.
So, what is it that employers can and cannot do during this lockdown?
Looking back on the last week, we compiled a list of FAQ to assist employers.
At 11am on 7 July 2021, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian announced that the lockdown for Greater Sydney and surrounding factions will extend at least until Friday, 16 July 2021. This represents a three-week lockdown hereby affected residents must stay at home causing...
The beginning of the financial year marks a number of important changes to the employment law area. These changes, relate to minimum wages, the unfair dismissal threshold, the Fair Work Information Statement and changes to the Superannuation Guarantee rate. A summary of the changes to come and what this means for your business is covered in this alert.
This time of year is typically when both employers and employees buckle down for mid-year performance appraisals. It can be a stressful time for some for many reasons. From an employer perspective, performance management and annual or bi-annual reviews instill dread as managers are tasked with conducting individual performance reviews. However, despite the angst and stress that accompanies performance reviews, not much else is achieved as a result of the review, other than to tick the relevant box stating they have been done. This surely cannot be the purpose of performance reviews. It certainly does not constitute appropriate performance management and the consequence of failing to have hard conversations can be costly.
Workplace bullying is a dynamic and complex phenomenon, its causes are often multifaceted and its impact individual and varied. It can have a profound effect on all aspects of a person’s health as well as their work and family life, undermining self-esteem,...
Are Your Casual Employees Actually Casual: Examining a new Federal Court Decision and What it Means for Australia’s Casual Workforce?
Many employers engage casual employees who are often longstanding members of their workforce and/or work a regular pattern of hours. However, are these employees really engaged on a casual basis? This has been a vexed issue for some time and for legal questions such...
As the Federal Government has recently announced, the COVID-19 vaccination rollout will commence in mid to late February, a full month ahead of the previously foreshadowed commencement schedule at the end of March 2021. As business and industry of all sizes has suffered during the pandemic, not to mention the complete shutdown of international air travel, many Australians, if not looking forward to the jab itself, are looking forward to a gradual return to normalcy and it is increasingly apparent that normalcy might only return once the majority of the population have been vaccinated.
As we have covered in previous client alerts, the COVID-19 pandemic has created a raft of unique challenges for employers striving to maintain safety, efficiency and productivity, and employees who, perhaps for the first time in their working lives, are now consistently working from home. For many of these employees, feelings of social isolation have led to reports of anxiety and depression, and with the Silly Season just around the corner, this means some serious red flags for employers. In this client alert we examine some of the current difficulties, and projected difficulties that COVID-19, will have on employees, and how best employers might deal with them.
As the nation begins to emerge from the COVID pandemic and businesses slowly recommence their ‘as usual’ activities, employers are understandably keen to return to commerce as soon as possible. No doubt, many sectors of industry were hit hard by the pandemic;...
While you hire someone, you may feel the need for some additional information on a candidate. After all, there are chances that the applicant may give you false or incomplete information on their application. Meanwhile, there are some employees who don’t want you to...
Few departments handle as many responsibilities and manage as much information as human resources. Technology makes the task of recruitment, performance evaluation, payroll, and benefits administration more manageable and allows human resource personnel to engage the...