Recent News

“We all support ISIS” Facebook sarcasm gets baggage handler sacked and 8 weeks pay for unfair dismissal

A few phrases you won’t hear at an airport are ‘bomb’ and ‘terrorist.’ When a Perth baggage handler posted ‘We all support ISIS’ to Facebook, he got the boot and $4,800 compensation for unfair dismissal. What happened? Aerocare Flight Support terminated Singh’s employment, after he made 5 posts on Facebook under the name ‘Sherry Solus […]

Managing Conflicts of Interest for Charities

As a director or trustee of a charity, you must always act in the best interests of the organisation. However, at times this responsibility can conflict with a director’s personal interests. This is why charities require effective governance – to ensure that these conflicts of interest are identified, resolved or avoided altogether. Conflicts of interest […]

Swearing in the Workplace: the F-Word is ‘Fired’

As employers continue to favour an increasingly relaxed workplace culture, the lines between life and work can become blurred. So is swearing in the workplace acceptable? Could an employee get sacked for dropping the ‘f-bomb’ on a tough day at the office? Recent case law shows that where expletives are concerned, context is everything. Employers […]

You Can’t Pick Your Family, But They Can Claim Your Estate

An ‘eligible person’ can make a claim on your estate if you did not make adequate provision for that person. An eligible person includes a spouse, a former spouse, a child, a person that the deceased was living with or are in a close personal relationship with, or a person who was at a time […]

Database Raid: Party-Party for the Raider

The Story A SAI Global employee jumped ship to a competitor, Infotrack, taking SAI's data with him on a USB stick. However, the raider lost more than bark in the ensuing court battle. First, The employer got urgent orders from the court requiring the employee to deliver up devices, computers and documents and to give […]

It’s all up in the AirBnB

In our previous article “Holiday Lettings Unlawful in Some Residential Areas”(link below), we discussed the case of Dobrohotoff v Bennic [2013] where a neighbour was frustrated by a nearby home being leased for wild parties including hens’ and bucks’ nights. Since then there have been developments in this interesting area of law. First, there is […]

Work Experience Cost him his Sight and Cost the Employer a $240,000 Fine

Year 10 work experience student, Alex Thomas, lost 75% of his sight from 'flash burns' after welding all day without lowering his UV darkening mask. The employer pleaded guilty to breach of the Work Health and Safety Act 2011. A breach of the Act can carry criminal penalties, fines of up to $1,500,000.00 and result […]

A party in liquidation may not be entitled to progress claims under the Security of Payments legislation

The Court of Appeal of the Victorian Supreme Court has heard an appeal of decision of Vickery J in Facade Treatment Engineering Pty Ltd (in liquidation) v Brookfield Multiplex Constructions Pty Ltd [2015] VSC 41.  In that earlier decision it was has held that provisions of the Building and Construction Industry Security of Payment Act […]

ATO Dragoons Prestige Property Purchasers to be Tithing Tax Collectors

A tax grab of biblical proportions… Anyone buying or selling property in Australia with a value of $2 million or more is caught by new tax collection rules from 1 July 2016. Vendors selling property for $2m or more must obtain a CGT  “clearance certificate” from the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) confirming that they ARE […]

Casually Counting Towards Entitlements

The full bench of the Fair Work Commission has found that casuals that convert to non-casual employment are entitled to notice and redundancy not only based on their permanent employment, but also their period of “regular and systematic” casual service:  AMWU v Donau [2016] FWCFB (Donau).  The Commission took a broad view of “continuous service” […]