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Employment law in Australia 


The Fair Work Act 2009 (FW Act) and the Fair Work Regulations 2009

The Federal and state legislation and case law govern a contractual relationship between employer and employee in Australia.  The Fair Work Act 2009 (FW Act) and the Fair Work Regulations 2009 are the main legislation in Australia.  They govern a safety net of minimum wages, entitlements, flexible working arrangements, and more importantly,  fairness at the workplace every employer in Australia has to comply with the law above and the National Employment Standards. 


The National Employment Standards (NES)

These ten  (10) fundamental standards is a critical feature and backbone of the employment law in Australia.  Breach of the NES result in serious consequences and careful attention and practice are required. 

Awards and Agreements

Awards and Agreements are minimum conditions that the workplace has to comply with.  it is a minimum standard with NES that the law says the employer must comply with regardless. 


Employment contract

The employment contract is a written agreement for employer and employee stating what needs to be done in exchange for what compensation to be paid.  the employment contract should not and must not disregard the NES and awards that impose minimum terms and conditions the workplace to comply with.   The bottom line is employment contract should not contain less favorable conditions to impose to employees than what is written in the relevant Awards.

Ending employment relationship

when ending an employer and employee relationship, employees carefully consider the final payments

  • Any pay in lieu of notice of termination

  • Any accrued annual leave and long service leave entitlements

  • The balance of any time off instead of overtime that the employee has accrued but not yet taken

  • Any redundancy pay or entitlements if the employees has been made redundant and is eligible.

what is unfair dismissal ? 

  • The dismissal was harsh, unjust or unreasonable

  • The dismissal was not a case of genuine redundancy

  • The small business did not follow the Small Business Fair Dismissal Code.

what is harsh, unjust or unreasonable dismissal ? 

  • No valid reason for the dismissal

  • No notified of that reason and an opportunity is given to respond

  • No support person presented at the meeting for the dismissal

  • No previous warning on lack of performance satisfaction 

  • No procedural fairness

  • any other matters that the Fair Work Commission considers relevant.

If you have any inquiries or wish to receive further information, please contact:

John Park / Dishar Rangi (research fellow from university of NSW) 
M + (61) 410 626 909 / 1300 577 502 /

Executive Lawyer / Insolvency Practitioner / Registered Migration Agent
Level 13, 2 Park Street, Sydney NSW 2000 /


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