Employment Law and Workplace Safety

How Ordinary And Customary Turnover Of Labour Affects Redundancy Entitlements

The recent Federal Court decision involving a subsidiary of Spotless Management Services clarifies the circumstances of when the redundancy pay exception for ordinary and customary turnover of labour applies.

Employers must demonstrate that the decision to terminate an employee’s employment with based on their labour turnover was “common and usual, and a matter of long-continued practice” for their business.

There Is No Such Thing As Being “Off The Clock”

The Fair Work Commission has upheld the dismissal of an employee who used social media to share a pornographic video with coworkers. The decision highlights how employees can discipline their staff for conduct engaged in outside of working hours.

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.