Mark (BA LLB Hons, University of Melbourne) leads the specialist employment law team at MDC Legal. He has over 20 years practice, mainly in industrial, workplace and employment law. He previously worked at a commercial litigation firm, then as a senior associate of a national firm, and as Principal Solicitor of the Employment Law Centre. Mark is a well-regarded practitioner in workplace relations law, named as a “leading lawyer” in Doyle’s Guide 2014, 2015, 2016, and “market leader” in 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020 and 2021. In addition to providing strategic and front end advice and implementing employment contracts, policies and procedures, Mark has conducted litigation and acted as counsel in several jurisdictions on “both sides of the fence” in a wide variety of matters, including injunctions and restraint of trade matters, protected industrial action, contractual claims, general protections and unfair dismissal claims, and bullying and discrimination claims.
Nikita (BA LLB, Murdoch University) is Special Counsel at MDC Legal, with over 12 years’ experience in workplace and employment law. She is currently recognised in Doyle’s Guide to the Legal Profession as the sole Preeminent employment lawyer (employee representation) behind Market Leader and MDC Legal Director, Mark Cox. Previously, Nikita was recognised as a recommended employment lawyer in Doyle’s Guide in 2018, 2019 and 2020. Nikita has worked with national and mid-tier law firms prior to joining MDC Legal and also has experience as a volunteer solicitor with community legal centres. Nikita has previously sat on various not-for-profit committees, including Women Lawyers of Western Australia Inc. and is regularly invited to speak at both legal and human resources conferences in the area of employment law. Nikita has advocacy and negotiation experience in the Federal Circuit Court of Australia, the Magistrates, District and Supreme Courts of Western Australia, in the Fair Work Commission and the Western Australian Industrial Relations Commission and in the Western Australian Equal Opportunity Commission. She advises employees and employers on all aspects of State and Federal workplace laws, including unfair dismissals and general protections matters, contractual and statutory rights and obligations, the drafting and interpretation of employment contracts, restructures, performance management and termination and discrimination. Nikita also works with Human Resources practitioners and business owners in the development of workplace relations strategies, policies and procedures.
Kate (LLB, Murdoch University) is Special Counsel at MDC Legal. Kate has 20 years’ experience in workplace and industrial relations, employment law and workplace health and safety law. Kate worked as in house legal counsel and in private practice at both top-tier and mid-tier law firms prior to joining MDC Legal. Kate is an experienced advocate having represented clients in the Federal Circuit Court and Family Court of Australia, State Administrative Tribunal, Fair Work Commission, Australian Human Rights Commission, and in the Western Australian Industrial Relations Commission. Kate has also represented both employers and employees in WorkSafe Investigations. She advises employers on all aspects of State and Federal workplace laws, including unfair dismissals and general protections matters, contractual and statutory rights and obligations, the drafting and interpretation of employment contracts, restructures, performance management, union disputes, enterprise bargaining and all aspects of workplace health and safety.
As Office Manager, Tina provides high end executive support to the Director, Special Counsel, Senior Associates and Lawyers, as well as managing the firm’s Administration Team and the day to day operations of the office. Tina also provides paralegal assistance, including preparing court files and briefs to counsel, lodging court documents and assisting with client file management. Tina maintains all finance related functions, including trust account and records management and also oversees the firm’s marketing, business development and events management. Tina has over a decade’s experience working in diverse finance management and accounting roles across various industries. Tina has also completed a Bachelor of Education and has formerly worked as a teacher in the Early Childhood industry.
Andrea McNamara (BA LLB, University of Western Australia) is a Senior Associate at MDC Legal. Andrea has been admitted to practice for over 12 years and has extensive experience in employment law. Prior to joining MDC Legal, Andrea has previously been the principal of her own legal practice specialising in all aspects of employment law and workplace relations. Andrea has also worked for a major trade union as an industrial officer, in private legal practice, for a leading workplace relations specialist firm, and within the government sector. Andrea represents clients in both state and federal industrial tribunals and courts, and has a commercial and pragmatic approach to complex issues.
Monica (BCom, Curtin University, LLB, Murdoch University) is a Lawyer at MDC Legal. Monica won the Law Society’s Emerging Lawyer of the Year Award in 2022. Monica has previous experience as a human resources consultant and as an industrial relations consultant advising employers on all aspects of employment relations. Prior to joining MDC Legal, Monica worked at a boutique workplace and commercial law firm in Melbourne and then as part of the litigation team in a Perth law firm. Monica has experience advising and advocating for both employees and employers and enjoys working with clients to achieve pragmatic outcomes.
Lucy Wardle (BA, JD, University of Western Australia) is a Lawyer at MDC Legal. Lucy graduated with a Juris Doctor from the University of Western Australia in 2020 and completed her Practical Legal Training with the Piddington Society whilst working as a Law Graduate at MDC Legal. Lucy has assisted with preparing applications and responses for unfair dismissal and general protections claims, conducted legal research, and drafted advice to clients, deeds of settlement and letters to other parties. Prior to joining MDC Legal as a law clerk in February 2020 Lucy volunteered in a variety of university and community groups, including Legal Aid WA and the Citizens Advice Bureau.
Thilini Kotuwegoda (BCom, JD, University of Western Australia) is a Lawyer at MDC Legal. Thilini graduated with a Juris Doctor from the University of Western Australia in 2021 and completed her Practical Legal Training with the College of Law in 2022. Thilini conducts legal research and drafts court documents, advice to clients and correspondence with courts, tribunals and other parties. She has also assisted in preparing unfair dismissal and general protections claims and responses, and deeds of settlement. Prior to joining MDC Legal, Thilini volunteered at several organisations, including Circle Green Community Legal Centre, where she assisted the Employment Law team and Gosnells Community Legal Centre, assisting the Domestic Violence team.
Nicholas Morrison (BSc, Murdoch University and JD, University of Western Australia) is a Lawyer at MDC Legal. Nicholas graduated with a Juris Doctor from the University of Western Australia in 2022 and completed his Practical Legal Training with the College of Law in 2023. Nicholas conducts legal research and drafts court documents, advice to clients and correspondence with courts, tribunals and other parties. He has also assisted in preparing unfair dismissal and general protections claims and responses, and deeds of settlement. Prior to joining MDC Legal, Nicholas clerked at Dwyer Durack and Gilchrist Connell as well as volunteering at the Mental Health Law Centre and at the Centre for Asylum Seekers, Refugees, and Detainees.
Grace Pham (BA, University of Western Australia) is a final year Juris Doctor student at the University of Western Australia. She is currently a Legal Administrative Assistant/Paralegal at MDC Legal and will be joining the firm as a Law Graduate in 2024. Grace conducts legal research, drafting and assists with client engagement. Grace has completed clerkships and worked in a paralegal capacity in private practice, including with a global law firm within its employment team.
Chelsea Woodford (BA, GradDipEd, University of Western Australia) is a Juris Doctor student in her penultimate year at the University of Western Australia. She is currently a Legal Administrative Assistant/Paralegal at MDC Legal. Chelsea performs legal research, drafts court documents and correspondence, and assists with client engagement. Chelsea completed a Graduate Diploma of Education and formerly worked as a teacher and Head of Department for Humanities in the Education Industry.
Joanne is part of MDC Legal’s legal support team. With great attention to detail, Joanne maintains the firm’s client files and archive systems with exceptional efficiency. Joanne has also assisted with courts files and large-scale document management for injunctions.
Please read these terms and conditions carefully.All payments of MDC invoices using the online payment facilities are subject to the following conditions.
1. This Agreement and attached Schedules set out the terms on which you engage MDC Legal to provide the Specified Working Schedules 1 and2 (Subscription).
2. This Agreement, the Subscription and our services are subject to the Legal Profession Act 2008(WA) (LPA). The services we provide will be by Australian legal practitioners,or a person employed by MDC Legal who is supervised by an Australian legal practitioner.
3. You agree to payan annual Subscription Fee set out in Schedule 1.
4. The Term of the Subscription is for 12 months starting on the day that you make your first subscription payment.
5. You maychoose to pay the Subscription Fee upfront for the Term, in which case you will receive a further 5% discount; or you may choose to make 12equal monthly payments, with each payment due no later than the 21st day of the month, or when that day is a weekend or public holiday, the closest business dayafter that.
6. Your Subscription terminates after 12 months unless you have opted for the automatic renewal option, or you have told us in writing at any time during the Term that you wish to renew the Subscription.
7. You cannot terminate your Subscription during the Term.
8. The Subscription Fee or other condition of the Subscription may bevaried during the Termby agreement in writing. We may agree a variation or offer a further and alternative engagement under separate costs agreement if you instruct us toundertakework in addition to the Specified Work,or if we are otherwise required to undertake work that falls outside of the scope of the Specified Work.
10. The Subscription Fee does not cover litigation or any other work outside of the scope of the Specified Work.
11. If you pay your Subscription Fee by credit card you authorise MDC Legal to process payments to that credit cardfor all Subscription Fees, including renewals.
12. It is your responsibility to ensure that your credit card details are current and correct during the Term. Please advise us of any changes to credit card information in writing to: [email protected] or to PO Box1656, West Perth 6872.
13. Non-payment of theSubscription Fee, or failure to respond to requests to provide current credit card details, does not constitute a termination of your Subscription. You remain liable for all Subscription Fees for the full Term.
14. If a monthly payment is unpaid for 15 days or more, we may charge you interest at the rate prescribed by the LPA. If we need to use a debt collecting service or external solicitors to recover our costs we reserve the right to pass those costs on to you.
15. The Subscription Fees may be more than would be chargeable under the costs scale fixed by the Legal Costs Committee (an independent statutory authority established under legislation that regulates the legal profession in Western Australia), namely the Solicitors Costs Determination 2015.
16. The Subscription Fees do not cover any disbursements or out of pocket expenses that we incur in acting on your instructions.
17. We pass on the cost of disbursements such as postage of larger than standard 4A or smaller letters, for all courier fees, printing, photocopying (40 cents a page), company search fees, court or tribunal fees and so on as they are incurred. You will not be charged for any single disbursement of over $50 without your prior approval. We do not charge for telephone or mobile phone costs, unless they are to international destinations.
18. GST(Goods and Services Tax) is payable in relation to each taxable supply under this Agreement. "GST", "taxable supply" and tax invoice" have the meaning given in the A New Tax System (Goods & Services Tax) Act 1999.
19. Only the persons you nominate in Schedule 2 as Authorised Users can access the Employment Law Advice Line.
20. Any changes to persons you nominate as Authorised Users must be confirmed in writing and are effected upon our confirmation of your request made in writing to: [email protected] or to PO Box1656, West Perth 6872.
21. We may terminate this Agreement in writing if:
You have not paid your Subscription Fee within 15 days of the due date;
You breach a materialterm of this Agreement or indicate an intention to do so;
The relationship of trust and confidence between us no longer exists; or
Complying with your instructions may lead to a breach of our professional obligations.
22. In circumstances where we terminate this Agreement for any of the above reasons the balance of any outstanding Subscription Fees become due and payable as a debt.
23. In these circumstances we will notify other parties, courts or tribunals that we no longer act for you. If this Agreement is terminated, it will not affect any lien we may otherwise have over your documents and property.
24. We own the copyright in all correspondence and documents that we produce including this one.Our documentsare not to be used for commercial purposes,reproduced or provided to third parties without our permission.
25. We assert our intellectual property rights over any and all work we produce in your matter to the fullest extent permitted by law.
26. We will return your original documents and property to you at the conclusion of your matter, subject to our right to assert a lien over your file, original documents and property to secure payment of our outstanding Subscription Fee, unless a court orders otherwise.
27. We are required by law to retain copies of your documents for 7 years before they are destroyed.
28. You are entitled and encouraged to seek independent legal advice about this Agreement.
29. This Agreement is governed by the laws applicable in, and the jurisdiction of the courts of, Western Australia.
30. This Agreement takes effect and is binding on the parties once you have returned the Agreement.
31. Please provide to us:
A signed copy of this Agreement;
Copies of any documents relevant to yourSubscription Service requirements, matter or inquiry, preferably in electronic form; and
Credit card details for direct debits in Schedule 1.