Claims – unfair dismissal, general protections, underpayment, discrimination, harassment
Employers are vulnerable to a raft of potential claims – unfortunately, it’s part and parcel of the employment relationship.
However, many potential blow-outs can be managed through careful planning and sound advice from the beginning. Our team prioritises resolving these disputes without litigation, but we also recognise when employers need to take a stand.
Our team assists employers manage and defend the full range of employment claims, from individual employee applications to collective union disputes.
If necessary, we can appear for you in the Fair Work Commission, State Industrial Relations Commissions and State and Federal Courts.
Engaging an employment lawyer before an issue arises may seem counterintuitive but pre-emptive legal guidance about difficult employment issues can save a lot of time and money.
Many of our clients use us as a trusted “sounding board” for difficult employee issues and to guide them through tricky situations – for example if an employee’s illness or injury is affecting their work or they respond to performance or conduct management with a complaint.
You don’t need to fill your office with boxes of unread staff policies, but having the right guidance and efficient, useful processes and policies in place can help prevent many issues before they arise.
If you want to proactively create and manage a positive culture that can drastically minimise the potential for disputes and HR issues, we can help you get it done.
Managing sick and injured employees
If an employee’s illness or injury impacts their work it can put strain on the employment relationship.
Doing the right thing by employees while protecting your rights as an employer is a delicate balance.
We assist employers with difficult return to work and illness/injury management issues, including managing the risk of a discrimination or other employment claim.
Many employers are concerned about the potential for former staff to leave their job and immediately breach confidentiality, poach clients and staff or interfere with client or supplier relationships.
We can help you defend your interests if an employee has breached their post-employment obligations, including restraint of trade, breach of confidentiality and employee or client poaching.
Sometimes urgent action is needed to protect your business from imminent harm. We can help you bring urgent Court applications where a breach of an employee’s post-employment obligations has caused or threatens to cause significant damage to your business.
We advise employers on when a workplace investigation is appropriate, how to properly conduct an investigation and the appropriate action to take once findings are made.
Clients also engage us to conduct workplace investigations quickly and efficiently if the matter is particularly complex.
Employment contracts and policies
Many employers use a “once and done” approach to employee contracts, but that’s not always the best way to do things.
With laws relating to work hours, minimum entitlements, restraint of trade, employee duties and much more in a state of regular change and adjustment, it’s important to ensure that all of your employee’s contracts are relevant, complete and up to date.
It’s for that reason that as well as offering fixed fee employment contracts tailored to your business, we strongly recommend that you review your employment contracts at least every 2 years.
Absent drastic changes (for example, following a change of government), this kind of review generally gives you the proactive protection you need.