Posts: Employment Contracts

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Employment Contracts

Notice of termination in the employment contract

Put it in writing

When it comes to engaging new employees or promoting existing employees, it is crucial that employers prepare and review contracts of employment to ensure that they accurately reflect the terms which will govern an employee’s employment.

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Conflicts of interest in the employment relationship

No competition

Many standard employment contracts contain a clause that addresses an employee’s obligations in relation to secondary employment and conflicts of interest. The obligation is generally that an employee will not act in a manner that conflicts with the interests of their employer or their duties as an employee. This contractual obligation is reflective of the common law duty that an employee must not engage in conduct that is incompatible with their duties to their employer

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Folau sacking case could change how employers deal with discrimination

"Impossible position" for employers

As the Israel Folau saga enters another chapter, our Managing Director Athena Koelmeyer shared her thoughts with Smart Company’s News Editor, Matthew Elmas, on how this case will potentially affect all employers and employees not just sporting organisations and athletes.

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The importance of consultation in the redundancy process

Talk to Me

The Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) (FW Act) provides that a person will not be unfairly dismissed where the person was dismissed as a result of genuine redundancy.

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Injunctions against suspensions from work

Ten in the bin

A suspension is a reasonable and lawful direction from an employer where, for the period of suspension, an employee will not be required to perform their duties in the usual manner they would normally be performed.

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Employer fails to demonstrate that redundancies were due to the ordinary and customary turnover of labour

No ordinary job

The FW Act provides a minimum entitlement to redundancy pay in situations where an employee’s position is genuinely made redundant.

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Notice of termination and the common law

Notice me!

In this blog, we explore the subtleties of one of the most standard clauses in the employment contract- the notice of termination clause.

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When employees are unable to perform their contractual duties

Are you ready (willing and able) for it?

One of the fundamental principles of the employment relationship is the work-wages bargain – an employer pays an employee wages in exchange for work performed.

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Sports Law - Employment Contracts

Law of the jungle - Panthers v Tigers

The last 48 hours has seen a lot of discussion in sports media about employment contracts centred around the Wests Tigers, Ivan Cleary and the Penrith Panthers

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Federal Circuit Court dismisses claim for cumulative overtime

A guy, two part-time jobs and an overtime claim

Multi-hire arrangements are a popular way for employees to supplement their income and to have flexibility.

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What is proper notice of termination and when does the exception to redundancy pay apply?

Turn around

Some employers operate exclusively on a continuous rotation of cycling client contracts won and lost regularly, but what does it mean for the employees engaged to perform work under those contracts?

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Employee’s Failing to Give Notice

Time to say goodbye

You may have seen on the internet some daring employees who choose to provide their employer’s notice of their resignation by interpretative dance, song and even cake! Whilst there are many ways that an employee can notify their employer of notice – what happens in circumstances where an employee does not provide proper notice of their resignation?

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Employer unreasonably ends Bryon Bay “work from home” arrangement

Lawful but not reasonable

Employees have an implied duty to obey their employer’s reasonable and lawful directions. Whilst employers cannot direct an employee to engage in conduct which is unlawful, the reasonableness of an employer’s direction will depend on the individual circumstances.

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The return of employer uniforms on termination of employment

In the box to the left

Ending the employment relationship can sometimes be difficult and often, those responsible for facilitating the termination are so relieved to have it all over that they don’t worry about pursuing the return of seemingly insignificant employer property, like used uniform items.

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Overtime and reasonable additional hours

Working 9 to 5?

Employers are often left completely surprised when an employee makes a claim for overtime payments they claim to have worked over the course of their employment.

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Drafting fixed term employment contracts

Does anybody really know what time it is?

Fixed term employment contracts are useful for employers who need to manage a workforce when personnel requirements are uncertain or may change, for example, when needed to trial a project, where a position is dependent on funding, or when needed for a specific period such as a parental leave position.

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Costly spelling mistakes

Oops I did it again!

It was reported in the news that an accounting firm was unsuccessful in its application to restrain its former partners from poaching and soliciting its clients after a spelling mistake in an email address meant critical correspondence was not received.

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Casual conversion, prior service and the calculation of entitlements

Preaching to the converted

The Fair Work Commission (FWC) recently heard the final submissions of parties in the casual employment case arising out of the four yearly review of modern awards (the Review). Of particular interest to the parties at the hearing was the operation of casual conversion clauses and how they affect ‘service’ as it is defined in the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) (FW Act).

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FWC Full Bench extends time for penalty rates decision

Extra-time for penalties

It has been more than two years since modern award penalty rates were identified as an issue for review by the Fair Work Commission (FWC) and there is still no ruling from the FWC Full Bench as to whether penalty rates in the hospitality and retail industries will change or remain the same.

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Employee given green light to pursue employer for underpayment

The fine print

The Western Australian Industrial Magistrates Court’s (the Court) decision in Simone Jade Stewart v Next Residential Pty Ltd [2016] WAIRC 00756 (16 September 2016) (Stewart’s Case) is a warning for employers to carefully review their current employment contracts, especially for award covered employees who are employed on an “annual salary” in accordance with an award term.

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How the Fair Work Act encourages flexibility in the workplace

Flexed to the limit

A recent survey conducted by global workplace solutions group, ManpowerGroup, has revealed that almost 90% of workers are opting for, or at least open to, arrangements that allow for flexibility in lieu of traditional “9 to 5” work arrangements.

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Ski employee was not dismissed

To everything there is a season

The Fair Work Commission (FWC) has dismissed an application for unfair dismissal in Bosley v Kosciuszko Thredbo Pty Ltd [2017] FWC 3763, upholding the jurisdictional objections of the employer.

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The Value of Restraint of Trade Clauses

Restrainted Love

Restraint of trade clauses are often used in employment contracts to prevent or limit an employee from engaging in conduct that is adverse or inconsistent with the employer’s interests once employment has ended. Typically, employees are restrained from soliciting clients or establishing competing businesses.

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Employee Admits to Copying and Accessing Former Employer’s Confidential Information

Copy and Paste

Employees have ready access to their employer’s confidential information during the course of their employment. For an employee, this information is important in order to carry out their duties but for an exiting employee, they may be tempted to improperly retain confidential information believing it will be useful in their new position.

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