Employment Law and Workplace Safety

Penalised Union Official Prevented From Accepting Union Contributions To Pay Court fines

By majority, the High Court has ruled that Courts can make an order under s.546 of the Fair Work Act for a union official not seek or accept indemnity or contribution from the union in respect of a pecuniary penalty imposed on the union official.  The High Court tackled the practical challenge of enforcing such an order by effectively warning union officials that they could be punished for contempt or imprisoned if they do.  A big win for the ABCC against militant unions. 

Uber Drivers – Employee Or Independent Contractor?

The distinction between employment and other contracting arrangements can have a significant impact on the obligations and penalties that businesses are exposed to.

In a recent decision, the Fair Work Commission determined that a Victorian Uber driver failed to satisfy the “work-wages bargain”, which is considered to be fundamental to employment and was deemed to be an independent contractor.

Casuals Now Entitled To Overtime

On 12 December 2017, the Fair Work Commission (FWC) varied a number of modern awards to include overtime rates for casual employees.

FWO Pursues Caltex Franchisee

In 2016, the FWO randomly audited 15 franchisees to ensure compliance with the Fair Work Act. Due to discrepancies discovered during the audit, Aulion Pty Ltd will shortly appear in court in relation to the alleged underpayment of overseas workers and falsification of employment records.