Employment Law

Whether you’re an employee or an employer, it is important that you understand your rights and obligations when issues arise in the workplace. Your obligations may arise from your employment contract, or under statute. Professional legal advice and representation is often crucial in any employment dispute to allow you to resolve any conflict relating to those rights and obligations. Shore Lawyers experienced Employment Law Solicitors are able to provide advice and representation in all employment law matters.

Contracts of Employment and Modern Awards

When an employer and employee enter into an employment relationship, specific and certain terms and conditions attach to that relationship, which are usually reduced to a written contract of employment. In the Australian jurisdiction of workplace relations, the contract is generally underpinned by reference to an Award. For example, office workers (including receptionists, executive or personal assistants and administrators) are generally covered by the terms of the Clerks’ (Private Sector) Award 2010. This award sets the minimum terms and conditions of employment that apply to the employee’s employment. Modern awards are industry specific. Thus there are awards that cover employees in most industries and occupations.

Due to the large number of awards in operation and their complexity, it is best to obtain legal advice from Shore Lawyers to ensure that you refer to the relevant award for your business, undertaking or enterprise. We can also provide advice to employees and employers in relation to contracts of employment.

Termination of Employment & Performance Management

Termination of employment procedures are particularly important in today’s business environment. Termination of employment issues, unfair dismissal matters and wrongful termination of employment claims make up a considerable proportion of disputed or litigated employment matters that come before courts and tribunals. These include the Fair Work Commission and other tribunals, including the Anti-Discrimination Board of New South Wales, the Industrial Relations Commission of New South Wales and similar regulatory bodies, in both the private and public sectors. Complaints by employees of workplace bullying, harassment and occupational health and safety breaches are also emerging areas of interest, that fuel and give rise to termination of employment decisions.

The ability of employees and their representatives, including solicitors and trade unions to challenge employers’ decisions to terminate or vary an employee’s employment contract has become a growth industry. 

Employers must therefore ensure that correct procedures, reasons and protocols are followed in every instance. Shore Lawyers recognises that employment law and workplace relations advice is an area of practice which must be understood and followed diligently by all business owners and managers. Adopting the correct procedures is now paramount to your business success.

If you are an employee and believe your employment has been unfairly terminated, it is important you receive professional legal advice and are aware of your rights. Contact Shore Lawyers today to speak with an experienced employment solicitor.

Occupational Health & Safety

In today’s business environment, occupational or workplace health and safety matters raise important and significant legal risks and commercial considerations.

Every employer irrespective of the size of their workforce or the industry in which they operate have obligations in ensuring that they provide employees with safe systems of work, which include safe premises to work. These obligations are mutual. This means that employers and employees have significant obligations to ensure the health safety and welfare of each other.

The obligation affects employees as much as it impacts upon employers. Traditionally, this obligation derives from the common law; but today this obligation has its origins in statute and Acts of Parliament.

Some industries may be more accident or incident prone than others. Industries including road transport, building/construction, agriculture and consumer manufacturing will have robust industry regulations in place. Whereas employers in hospitality, gaming, food-service, medical, retail, clerical and general administrative industries will each have different pressures specific to their workplaces and business environments.

If you are an employee, an employer, volunteer or visitor to a workplace, Shore Lawyers can advise you as to your rights and obligations under OHS.

Please feel free to Contact Shore Lawyers to arrange for your initial consultation.