BEAR (now FAR) – the extension of the Banking Executive Accountability Regime

On 4 February 2019, the Morrison Government announced it would implement recommendations 3.9, 4.12, 6.6, 6.7 and 6.8 of the Financial Services Royal Commission to extend the Banking Executive Accountability Regime (BEAR) to all APRA-regulated entities e.g. banks, insurance and superannuation firms and provide joint administration to ASIC as the conduct regulator. On 22 January […]

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Victoria to introduce offence of Industrial Manslaughter: What does it mean for employers?

The Victorian Parliament recently passed the Workplace Safety Legislation Amendment (Workplace Manslaughter and Other Matters) Bill 2019 (Bill), to introduce a new offence of ‘industrial manslaughter’ under section 39G of the Occupational Health and Safety Act 2004 (Vic) (OHS Act). The Bill comes just months after the national “Review of the model WHS laws: Final report” […]

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Culture-related Regulatory Enforcement: Where might the Australian ‘BEAR’ go hunting?

This two-part briefing has been prepared for in-house legal, risk and compliance professionals in financial services firms, including insurance and superannuation entities. Part one of this briefing covers the following matters: Introduction to the “Banking Executive Accountability Regime” (BEAR) What is required under the regime and penalties for individuals and companies BEAR’s imminent expansion to […]

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Are your part-timers really part-timers? Another reason it’s time for a compliance check!

There is no more important time than now for employers to ensure they know and effectively manage the correct legal categorisation of their workforce and the attendant entitlements and obligations. Casuals, contractors and now part-timers have all been the flavour of the month for the Fair Work Ombudsman (FWO). Luxottica Retail Australia Pty Ltd, trading […]

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Fine Dining Room or Dining Room Fined?

At the moment, we have a perfect storm of Australian culture and the economy making for headlines. There is an extensive focus on food and fine dining spilling over to reality television shows and the cult of the celebrity chef generating pages of newspapers, magazines and hours of television. This has also involved a competitive […]

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Ill or injured employees: when is termination ‘valid’?

In the recent decision of Jack v Sigma Healthcare T/A Sigma Healthcare [2019] FWC 6364 (13 September 2019) the Fair Work Commission (Commission) has determined that an employee who was dismissed by her employer, Sigma Healthcare (Sigma), after she sustained an injury outside of work and could no longer perform the inherent requirements her job, […]

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Federal Government and Cadbury seek leave to appeal Federal Court decision that left bad taste in employers’ mouths

The Federal Government and major employer Mondelez, who operates a Cadbury plant in Tasmania, will seek leave to appeal last month’s landmark Full Federal Court decision regarding paid personal/carers’ leave, to the High Court. The decision concerned the meaning of the word “day” for the purpose of the entitlement to 10 days paid personal/carer’s leave […]

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Performance management, workplace bullying and reasonable management action

The management of employee performance is a key component for every successful organisation. However, performance management by its very nature, is difficult and can often lead to a range of legal risks for businesses. One particularly difficult scenario is where an employee alleges the performance management process, or the way in which performance management is […]

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Potential reform of Australia’s federal discrimination laws

The Australian Human Rights Commission is currently reviewing Australia’s federal discrimination laws and considering what reforms should be made to those laws. To that end, the Commission recently released a discussion paper, “Free and Equal: An Australian Conversation on Human Rights“, setting out its preliminary views on the priorities for reform. The paper notes that […]

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New whistleblower laws: ASIC consults on whistleblower policy requirements

We recently published a comprehensive guide to the new obligations for employers and the expanded protections for whistleblowers, under Australia’s revised corporate whistleblowing regime. That regime commenced operation on 1 July 2019 and creates a significant compliance burden for all companies, including the requirement for some companies to have a whistleblower policy.   Who must […]

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Doing Business in Australia

The Australian Government welcomes foreign investment. With well-developed infrastructure, a stable political environment, robust economy and easy access to Asia Pacific, Australia is an ideal investment location for foreign companies looking to grow internationally. There are important considerations for foreign investors to make when deciding on how to enter the Australian market. Whether it’s the […]

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Modern Slavery Act

The Modern Slavery Act 2018 (Cth) (‘Act’) commenced on 1 January 2019 and requires organisations with an annual consolidated revenue of more than $100 million to report annually on the risks of modern slavery within their supply chain. The Act is similar to the UK legislation. Organisations will be required to submit their first report after the […]

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