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Many people believe that if they do not have a written employment contract, they are not bound by a contract with their employer at all. This is a common mistake, as an employment contract exists whether written or not, the moment the employer and employee agree on terms of employment. The contract terms can be either express, that is written or verbally agreed, or implied by law, or a combination of both.
Posted on:
23 May 2016
A businessman handed over control of his companies’ assets after a gang-bashing and threats to his wife and children. He did not report the attacks or the theft to the police. Yet he was afterwards able to recover assets from an innocent third party who had bought them from the extortioner in good faith. This appellate decision clarifies an important point about the exception in section 26 of the Sale of Goods Act 1923 (NSW). This exception is also part of the law of the United Kingdom, as well as of other Australian States and Territories. Its terms are set out below. The decision reinforces the need to check the bona fides and authority of anyone selling large company assets, such as construction plant and equipment.
Posted on:
20 May 2016
Going viral on the web can be great for bloggers, Instagrammers, Tweeters and Facebook users, but what happens when an employee posts a “status”, “hashtag” or uploads content that is potentially offensive, intimidating or injurious to the reputation of their employer.
Posted on:
10 Apr 2016
Under Part 6-4B of the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) (“Act”) the Fair Work Commission (“Commission”) has the power to make a “stop bulling order” when a worker has been bullied at work, unless the alleged bullying conduct amounts to “reasonable management action” carried out in a “reasonable manner”.
Posted on:
21 Mar 2016
In the last few weeks we have appeared in numerous unfair dismissal matters. The level of activity in this jurisdiction is not unusual given that in the period between October to December 2015 the Fair Work Commission received a total of 3636 unfair dismissal applications. Why is this jurisdiction so popular?
Posted on:
16 Mar 2016
Many of my clients tell me that they just want to terminate the employment of a troublesome employee and they do not want the hassle of a long drawn out process they believe is required to ensure the employee cannot bring an unfair dismissal claim. I often hear the refrain that it is “impossible to terminate employees in Australia”.
Posted on:
29 Feb 2016
(Adcock v Blackmores Limited & Ors [2016] FCCA 265) This case concerned an application by Mr Adcock, the former Commercial Manager (Asia) of Blackmores Limited (“Blackmores”) a publicly listed company which produces and sells a range of natural healthcare products, who sought compensation in excess of $140,000 on the basis that his employer dismissed him by refusing to recognise that his position was redundant and had repudiated his contract of employment by failing to pay him redundancy entitlements under an enterprise agreement. 
Posted on:
22 Feb 2016
Change management and downsizing has the potential to present a melting pot of legal issues for employers, and there are many practical traps for organisations to consider in planning and executing redundancies especially in a tough economic environment. 
Posted on:
12 Feb 2016
Without even realising it, we now accept that what would otherwise be a private conversation may in fact be recorded. Many of the day to day exchanges we have in society may be recorded for the benefit of record keeping, or simply for training, coaching and customer services purposes.
Posted on:
5 Feb 2016
Surveillance and monitoring devices are becoming increasingly popular in and around the workplace, but what is the law in regards to recording employees at work. Apart from having a digital receipt of what goes on in the workplace, there are several good reasons why employers invest in surveillance systems. However, there is legislation in place which limits the ability to monitor workers and, perhaps more importantly, to rely on surveillance in circumstances where an employee is suspected of some unlawful or improper conduct.
Posted on:
1 Feb 2016