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(Butterworth v Independence Australia Services (Human Rights) [2015] VCAT 2056) This case concerned the applicant, Maureen Butterworth, who worked at Independence Australia Services (“IAS”) in the position of Customer Service Officer. IAS is a not-for-profit organisation providing communicated-based services to people with disabilities.
Posted on:
22 Jan 2016
The distinction between an employment relationship and that of independent contractor is often vexed. However, the failure to properly characterize the relationship may lead to significant adverse consequences, including prosecution under the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) for sham contracting. In this article we focus on the risks associated with prosecution for sham contracting. 
Posted on:
18 Jan 2016
Group proceedings were brought concerning alleged incorrect information in an explanatory memorandum sent to shareholders prior to a merger under the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth).  When the defendant company brought contribution proceedings against the directors of its subsidiary company (on the basis that they had been involved in preparation of the explanatory memorandum), those directors found themselves without directors and officers (D&O) insurance cover.  
Posted on:
13 Jan 2016
The Australian data protection landscape is set to become even more complicated.  As well as existing and proposed Australian requirements, Australian entities that hold personal data relating to European residents will soon be subject to the European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which will have extra-territorial effect. 
Posted on:
22 Dec 2015
I have often been asked whether an employer can terminate an employee’s employment for serious misconduct, if the employee has either resigned and is working out their notice, or they have been given notice of termination, and are working out the notice. The answer to this question depends on whether the contract of employment comes to an end when notice is given or when the notice period expires. 
Posted on:
11 Dec 2015
As the year draws to a close, many employers will be celebrating the end of 2015 with their employees, and other work colleagues. Work functions such as Christmas parties are a great opportunity to have fun with colleagues, but as is still too often the case, work Christmas parties can be a source of considerable distress and can cause significant loss and damage to the business and its employees. 
Posted on:
11 Dec 2015
Last week, the Federal Court of Australia took matters a step further than previous decisions by holding that a head contractor who holds security from the sub-contractor (in this case, bank guarantees), may call on that security to recover funds which it has been ordered to pay over by an adjudicator under security of payment legislation. 
Posted on:
10 Dec 2015
On Thursday, 3 December 2015 the Attorney-General’s Department released an exposure draft of the ]]>Privacy Amendment (Notification of Serious Data Breaches) Bill 2015]]> (the Bill), together with a discussion paper, draft explanatory memorandum and draft regulatory impact statement.  The Bill is intended to replace the Privacy Amendment (Privacy Alerts) Bill 2013, which lapsed at the end of the previous Parliament despite bipartisan support. 
Posted on:
8 Dec 2015
The Federal Court of Australia has rejected a line of English, Hong Kong, Singaporean and Australian authority which holds that litigants who unsuccessfully challenge an arbitration agreement should normally be penalised with indemnity costs.  
Posted on:
3 Dec 2015
The Federal Court of Australia granted an insurer relief from the requirement to notify all affected policy holders when transferring general insurance and reinsurance business.  It imposed an alternative notice regime which included notification of overseas regulators, and of each national head office in the case of multi-national corporate group cedents.  The judgment will assist insurers who are considering a transfer of amalgamation of insurance business in Australia. 
Posted on:
25 Nov 2015

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