Performance Management & Misconduct Investigations Archives - MDC Legal

Dismissing an Employee

Probationary Problems: Dismissing an Employee on Their Probation Period

Posted by | Performance Management & Misconduct Investigations, Terminations, Unfair Dismissals & Adverse Action | No Comments

By Renae Harg, Senior Associate and Lauren Wright, Law Graduate

Can you terminate an employee during their probation period?

Some employers proceed under the misapprehension that they can terminate an employee on probation without providing any reason for the dismissal, with the employee unable to pursue any legal claim against them. The recent decision of Pacheco-Hernandez v Duty Free Stores Gold Coast Pty Ltd (No. 2) [2019] FCCA 1295 has shown this is incorrect. Read More

social media for employees

High Court Rules on Social Media and Free Speach

Posted by | misconduct, Performance Management & Misconduct Investigations, polices and procedures | No Comments

By Mark Cox, Director and Madeleine Brown, Associate

High Court rules in favour of employer in social media freedom of political communication case

Comcare v Banerji [2019] HCA 23

A public servant sacked for publishing 1000’s of anonymous tweets criticising her employer has failed in her bid to challenge her dismissal as a breach of the implied freedom of political communication. Read More

filing a cross claim

Employee claimants can face cross claims

Posted by | Articles, Contracts, misconduct, Performance Management & Misconduct Investigations | No Comments

By Mark Cox, Director and Lauren Wright, Law Graduate

Employers successfully making cross claims against former employees

In a recent trend, employers are successfully filing cross claims against employees after the employee has commenced claims against the employer. Two recent Federal cases highlight that employers need to issue cross claims in a timely manner, and that employees need to be aware of the significant financial risks that they could be exposed to if their employer pursues a cross claim against them. Read More

whistleblower protection

Whistleblower Protection Changes – Update Your Policy Now

Posted by | Articles, Performance Management & Misconduct Investigations | No Comments

By Renae Harg, Senior Associate

Australia amends whistleblower protection laws

New laws providing greater protection for whistleblowers were passed through federal parliament and take effect on 1 July 2019. The Treasury Laws Amendment (Enhancing Whistleblower Protections) Act 2019 (Cth) (Whistleblower Act) was introduced to provide for a single, strengthened whistleblower regime to cover the corporate, financial and credit sectors. Read More

Long Christmas lunches and excessive online shopping: Tips for employers

Posted by | disciplinary action, disciplinary policies, HR Advice & Support, Performance Management & Misconduct Investigations | No Comments

Some employees may see the Christmas period as an opportunity to focus more on festive season activities and less on work. Employees may spend excessive time away from the office, having lunch or Christmas shopping. Other employees may spend excessive time online, shopping for Christmas presents or planning Christmas activities, or excessive time decorating the office. These types of behaviours can be difficult for employers to manage, without appearing Grinch-like and while still ensuring staff morale remains positive over the busy Christmas period. 

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Party Planning What to do before the Christmas Party

Posted by | Articles, HR Advice & Support, Performance Management & Misconduct Investigations, sexual harassment, Terminations, Unfair Dismissals & Adverse Action, Work Christmas party | No Comments

As we rapidly approach the end of the year, the office Christmas party can be cause for concern for many employers. There are two key issues that employers should turn their mind to when planning their staff Christmas party.

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External advisers and HR managers accessorily liable for breaches of the Fair Work Act as penalties for breaches intensify on small businesses

Posted by | HR Advice & Support, Industrial Relations, Performance Management & Misconduct Investigations | No Comments

In a recent decision of the Federal Circuit Court an external accountant who advised a business on its employee arrangements was held liable under the accessorial provisions of the Fair Work Act. This decision is a red flag to external advisors who are closely involved with HR, payroll and employee entitlements of employer businesses.

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Performance and Conduct Issues for Employees Raising Mental Illness

Posted by | Articles, HR Advice & Support, Performance Management & Misconduct Investigations | No Comments

Around 45% of Australians aged between 16 and 85 will experience a mental illness in their lifetime, and 1 in 5 Australian adults will experience a mental illness in any given year.[1]  Therefore, it is very likely that from time to time an employer will need to performance manage an employee who is experiencing a mental illness.

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Lying and theft justifies termination of flight attendant

Posted by | Articles, Performance Management & Misconduct Investigations, Terminations, Unfair Dismissals & Adverse Action | No Comments

Qantas has succeeded in its appeal to undo the unfair dismissal finding for a flight attendant who stole alcohol and lied during the investigation. The FWC Full bench overturned the ruling of unfair dismissal in Qantas Airways Limited v David Dawson [2017] FWCFB 41, finding that Deputy President Lawrence had failed to take into account the Qantas employee’s dishonesty during the investigation into allegations of theft.

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Employer Hotel Fined For Caretaker Sexually Assaulting Young Employee

Posted by | Articles, Discrimination & Bullying, Performance Management & Misconduct Investigations | No Comments

A female hotel employee in Queensland has been awarded $313,000 in damages for sexual harassment and assault she was subjected to in her bed by the hotel caretaker. The case rings a warning to employers that they need to take reasonable steps to prevent employees engaging in or being exposed to such conduct.

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