Recent News

Employers Can Mandate Vaccinations. Can they require COVID-19 Vaccination? Probably!

In March, we asked whether employers can require their staff to obtain a Covid-19 vaccination.  Back then, we said:  Not Yet! Six months on, the Courts and Fair Work Commission are yet to rule on this question.  However, the Fair Work Commission has just ruled that an aged care employer can require employees to be […]

Casuals lose Annual Leave Windfall

The Government and the High Court have confirmed that casual employees cannot double dip on annual leave loadings.  Casuals are paid a casual loading of around 25%.  The casual loading is meant to cover permanent entitlements like annual leave. Until last week, the Federal Court was saying that casuals can double dip:  see Casual gets […]

Lifting the Sydney Fog – “No, you can’t work at home. I need you in here at Work”

Can you say it? When and to whom? As new and complex public health orders arrive hourly, how are employers to respond? The blurred lines between independent contractors and employees just got further shrouded by an early morning Sydney fog. There are two prongs to the public health movement orders affecting working at home. Direction […]

More B2B Compliance from 1 July 2021 – New $100,000 Threshold for Consumer Guarantee

The definition of a business consumer under the Australian Consumer Law just keeps expanding. In late 2016, small businesses became business consumers under the ACL so they could get ACL unfair contract terms relief when signing standard form contracts – see here. Now, from 1 July 2021, the consumer guarantee provisions will be extended yet […]

Can Employers Require COVID-19 Vaccination? Not Yet!

The Fair Work Ombudsman (FWO) and Safe Work Australia (SWA) are telling employers and employees that by and large: employers will be unable to require vaccination by their employees. employees will be unable to refuse to work because a colleague is unvaccinated. Peter McNamara says: “Employers should still be aware of public health orders could […]

High Income Threshold and Compensation Cap for Unfair Dismissal Applications – 1 July 2021

Employers should be alert to current worker entitlements: Unfair Dismissal High Income Threshold; Compensation Cap for Unfair Dismissal; Redundancy Tax Free Amount; Employment Termination Payments (ETP) Lower Tax Rate Cap; Superannuation Maximum Contribution Base; and Civil Penalties for Breaches of the Fair Work Act. Unfair Dismissal High Income Threshold From 1 July 2021, the High […]

Two Strikes and You’re Out – Short Term Rental Code

The NSW Government has given property investors and their neighbours a special Christmas present.  From 18 December 2020 a new Code of Conduct applies in NSW to all short term letting.  Media attention has been on the tighter rules for unruly guests with “two strikes and you’re out” rules.  However, this benefit for landlords and […]

When helping your kids get into the property market can backfire

Parents can contribute funds to help their children buy a home or investment. But what happens, years down the track, when the child leaves a marriage or de facto relationship? Peter McNamara wrote previously about the case where the courts found that a daughter held a one third beneficial interest in her unit on trust for her […]

First-Home Buyers, stamp duty relief and parental loans that become gifts

From 1 August 2020, first-home buyers in NSW will save stamp duty of up to $31,355 for purchases of new homes up to $800,000 (up from $650K), with the saving phasing out at $1 million and for vacant land up to $400,000 (up from $350K), phasing out at $500,000. You can read the announcement here. […]

The Folau Saga: Contractual Obligations and Freedom of Religion

Although Israel Folau recently reached a confidential settlement with Rugby Australia, the termination of Folau’s contract reinvigorated debate about religious freedom for employees and their contracts. Intuitively, perhaps, employers should only be able to restrict employees’ conduct within the workplace, whether that be an office or a rugby pitch. However, this simply is not the case! The rise of social […]