Employment Law Update — Minimum Wage Increase

The Fair Work Commission minimum wage panel decision of 1 June 2018 announced a 3.5% increase to the Federal Minimum Wage Rate.

The decision lifts the federal weekly minimum wage from $18.29 per hour ($694.90 per week) to $18.93 per hour ($719.20 per week). 

The increase in minimum wages will take effect from the first full pay period commencing on or after Sunday, 1 July 2018.

Unfair Contract Terms (Small Business Loans) Update

Since November 2016, the unfair contract terms provisions in the Australian Consumer Law have covered not only standard form contracts given to consumers but also those provided to small businesses.

The Australian Investment and Consumer Commission recently released ‘Report 565’ outlining the commitment the ‘big 4’ banks have made to update the standard form loan agreements they have with small businesses to comply with these provisions.

Scam Awareness Week

Since 2005, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) in partnership with other Federal, State and New Zealand Government organisations have operated the Scam Awareness Network. The purpose of the network is to work alongside non-governmental and private sector bodies to protect consumers from fraud. Every year the Network runs ‘Scams Awareness Week’, which will be held 21-25 May this year.

A Tale Of Two Beers: Passing Off And Misleading And Deceptive Conduct

This month the Full Federal Court considered the case of a producer who claimed that their competitor had been passing off a product that was similar to their own.

The Court found that merely taking advantage of a market created by another producer was not enough for passing off. Misrepresentation and damage to goodwill are also required.