Employee rights are an important and growing area of the law. There are a number of circumstances in which an employee may take legal action against, or report, an employer. These include, but are not limited to:
- The employee being bullied, harassed or discriminated against;
- The employee’s employment being unlawfully terminated;
- The employer breaching the terms and conditions of the employee’s employment contract; or
- The employer failing to comply with legislation relating to employment, such as the Fair Work Act.
Generally, it is recommended that the parties to a dispute attempt to resolve their issues amicably. If this is unsuccessful, taking legal action will be the next step. It’s important that employee rights, as well as employer rights, are respected. The forums in which an employee can seek legal redress are:
- External dispute resolution (e.g. mediation or arbitration);
- Court or tribunals (e.g. Local Court, District Court, Supreme Court, Federal Court or Administrative Appeals Tribunal);
- Australian Human Rights Commission;
- Fair Work Commission (formerly Fair Work Australia);
- Fair Work Ombudsman.
Keep in mind, it’s a good idea to seek legal representation as early as possible in order to ensure that you do not take a course which is unadvisable. Ensuring your employee rights are respected is extremely important. To clarify your rights in your employment, you might want to review your employee handbook or speak with an experienced employment law specialist at LegalVision.