Connect Legal, its principal solicitor Jake Boghossian and its senior solicitor Richard Aslanian have been representing clients in defending their workplace rights with a combined experience of over 20 years. Connect Legal has achieved significant financial and non-financial results for their clients and take passion in ensuring your employment rights are safeguarded.
When instructing Connect Legal to defend your unfair dismissal claim we take very extensive instructions in relation to your employment circumstances, not limited to your award and contractual rights, performance KPIs, and the reasons leading to your termination.
Thereafter we lodge detailed written submissions with Fair Work and this forms the cornerstone of our resolution strategy. Throughout the conciliation stage, we remain very observant to what your past employer defence and ensure we achieve a very sound and beneficial resolution.
When dealing with Connect Legal rest assured your rights will be safeguarded, we will resolve the claim in accordance with your instructions and to the best of our abilities.
Our legal services will be undertaken on a No Win No Fee basis as has been the case from inception when we commenced defending employee rights in the late 90s.
Please note there are only twenty one days (21) from the date of your termiantion to lodge an unfair dismissal claim and please contact our office on 02 9889 2239 at your earliest opportunity.
Finally, in some circumstances when one has exercised their workplace rights in relation to their award, overtime, superannuation, work, health and safety, workplace bullying and discrimination, one may also consider launching an adverse action claim.
We have been defending employee workplace rights for over 20 combined years and have achieved significant results for employees who have been dismissed unfairly. In many instances, employers use a simplistic excuse to terminate one’s employment and it is crucial one conducts a forensic examination to properly ascertain the reasons for termination. At Connect Legal, we undertake extensive interviews prior to lodging your written submission with Fair Work Australia and clearly articulate in fact and in law how your dismissal is unfair.
Dismissal generally occurs where an Employer has dismissed an employee for performance based, behavioural and or redundancy reasons. The significant factor is that the employment was terminated at the initiative of the employer. Dismissal can also include a forced resignation - constructive dismissal where an employee has resigned, but was forced to do so because of the conduct and or actions of his or her employer. Demotion can also infer a dismissal if there has been a significant reduction in remuneration or duties of the employee.
Employees who are employed pursuant to a modern award and or enterprise agreement, earn under the high income threshold (currently $142,000) and who have been employed for at least one year (for small businesses) or 6 months (for larger businesses) can lodge an unfair dismissal claim.
A dismissal is unfair if the decision to terminate your employment was harsh, unjust or unreasonable, if it was not a case of genuine redundancy, or it was inconsistent with the Small Business Fair Dismissal Code. When considering whether a termination is unfair, Fair Work Australia (FWA) will consider whether there was a valid reason for the dismissal, whether you were given an opportunity to respond, your performance and behaviour, whether any warnings were issued, the size of the employer and other matters.
The employer should at all instances provide you with verbal and written feedback regarding your performance and provide you a reasonable opportunity to improve. In various circumstances, when you have not bene given sufficient warning and/or been given a waning a short period before termination, the commission will take this into consideration when making their determination.
A genuine redundancy occurs when an employment position no longer exists and there has been thorough consultation. However if you suspect your redundancy is a sham, when there was no consultation and more importantly your position exists and or you could have been transferred to another position then you should consider lodging an unfair dismissal claim.
Your application must be filed with Fair Work Australia within 21 days of your employment being terminated. The 21 days is inclusive of weekdays and weekends and commences from the date of your effective termination.
When lodging an unfair dismissal claim, you can seek reinstatement, compensation up to 6 months in wages, seeking to have your termination amended to a resignation, references/ statement of service and other remedies. The Commission will also take into consideration your length of employment, performance and whether any warnings were issued.
Conciliation is an informal meeting / teleconference between your former employer, the FWA conciliator, the parties’ representatives and yourself. During the conciliation the conciliator may ask questions of you or your employer to provide assistance in resolving the dispute. When briefing a solicitor we complete all your submissions and undertake all the verbal discussions and resolutions on your behalf.
On many occasions when employees have been dismissed they may be unaware that throughout their course of employment they have been underpaid. Connect Legal can advise regarding your unpaid wages entitlements and commence separate proceedings in another jurisdiction to claim your entitlements.
The matter will be referred to a FWA Commission Member who will listen to the evidence of both parties, you will also have to enter the witness box and a determination - an order will be made. The Commission will firstly consider reinstatement and if not practicable compensation of up to 6 months based on your weekly salary.
Indeed you can raise discrimination allegations in an unfair dismissal claim, but the Fair Work Commission cannot make any orders to remedy discrimination matter. We would have to lodge a separate claim at the Australian Human Rights Commission and Connect Legal can help at both the tribunal and court level.
Yes you can still lodge an unfair dismissal claim , but your employer will allege that you were contractor and not an employee and have no right to lodge one. Maybe an adverse action and a sham contracting claim may be more appropriate in these circumstances.
Please also note you only have 6 months (six months) to lodge your discrimination and or sexual harassment claims. Please at your earliest opportunity contact Jake and or Richard at Connect Legal to discuss your discrimination circumstances.
A whistleblower is an individual who reports , either verbally and or in writing , to senior management and or officers of the corporation, any kind of information or activity that is deemed illegal, dishonest, unethical , and / or breaches of statutory laws and regulations , for example under the Corporations Act 2000, the Australian Consumer and Competition Laws and or industry specific laws. Corporations and its directors / senior managers have very broad fiduciary and legal obligtaions in the performance of their duties and need to stringently comply with the relevant corporate, environmental, taxation, workplace and / or work health and safety laws. The Corporations Act provides significant safeguards for whistleblowers and makes it a criminal offence to victimise one because of a protected disclosure. Lately we have sensed a greater determination by employees and middle level management to raise their concerns regarding unethical and unlawlful corporate behaviour and conduct. Indeed we regularly also hear " If I speak up I will lose by job" and our advice has been it is essential you speak up when the corporations conduct seriously affects consumers, suppliers , and the general public, physically, financially, and emotionally. Please see further examples of whistleblower conduct and please contact Connect Legal, speak to Richard and or Jake whenever you have been victimised for legitimately raising your concerns.
I have lodged an unfair dismissal claim in relation to my termination, but I have suffered racial discrimination because of my race and culture and this was not related to my termination. They say I was terminated for not doing my job well, but I don’t believe this. Can I also lodge a racial discrimination claim alongside my unfair dismissal claim
One is a dismissal related claim and one is a claim to say that during your employment period, you have been racially discriminated or vilified or experienced racial hatred. For the latter, you can file a human rights complaint at the Australian Human Rights Commission (AHRC). However, you always need to be wary that there is currently a six-month limitation period for filing Human Rights complaints with the AHRC and if you file a claim outside of the six-month period, the commission may terminate your complaint on that basis. The six month limitation period commenced when the contravening conduct occurred. In the alternative, you also need to be wary that if you are filing a general protections case, sections 725 – 734 of the Fair Work Act 2009 prevent you from filing multiple actions for the same cause of action, however so long as there is a clear difference between your dismissal and the preceding conduct, which may be for example race discrimination, disability discrimination or sexual harassment then addition to your dismissal claim at Fair Work, you can also file a complaint with the AHRC. Finally, at the AHRC’s discretion, if you have filed two separate claims, the AHRC may terminate your human rights complaint on the basis that it was already the subject of conciliation at the Fair Work Commission and whilst you can continue with this claim in the Federal Court jurisdiction, you will require the leave of the court.
I work within the accounting and advising industry and in January 2018, I went on a period of maternity leave. Recently (September 2019) I rang my employer and said I am coming back to work and they said “Well we shuffled things around. Your job’s been spread amongst others. When you come back, we’ve got another role for you and possibly it’s part-time.” What are my rights? What am I supposed to do?
A) Under division 5 of the National Employment Standards, you may have an entitlement to parental leave Section 74 has requirements in relation to notice and evidence of your start and end dates of that leave. One of the most important aspects of taking parental leave is ensuring that you keep regular written contact with your employer and outline to them the commencement date of your leave and your proposed return date. Under section 83, if the employer makes a decision that would significantly affect your employment status, for example a transfer of employment position or a change from full-time to part-time, they are required to consult with you prior to affecting any change. Under section 84, if you have complied with all the requirements under division 5, you will have a return to work guarantee where you are entitled to return to your pre-parental leave position, or if that position no longer exists, an available position for which you are qualified and suited nearest to the status and pay of your pre-parental leave position. In the alternative, if you have evidence to suggest that your former employer is in fact discriminating against you because of your pregnancy or exercise of workplace rights in undertaking parental leave (paid or unpaid), you can seek relevant remedies by filing a general protections claim and alleging a contravention of section 340, 351(1) or 352 of the Fair Work Act 2009 or alternatively, file a discrimination complaint at the AHRC under the Sex Discrimination Act 1984.
Under statute, employees have significant workplace rights under state based Occupational Health and Safety laws which provide for very serious protections and prohibitions of workplace bullying, harassment and general unsafe work practices. In instances when you have raised significant work, health and safety in relation to the work you performed, the workplace environment, the equipment you utilised and/or have raised serious bullying issues either verbally or in written form, please contact Connect Legal to discuss your adverse action claim.
Our recommendation will be to consider lodging a General Protection Claim because it seems you were dismissed because of a workplace right, namely your right to apply and receive workers compensation whilst injured. An employer’s obligation is not only to assist the employee to lodge a workers compensation claims and ensure a safe return to full time work. Ring Connect Legal for a free telephone consultation.
You have a right to ask for flexible working arrangement and your employer has to be reasonable and can only reject your request on reasonable operatonal grounds If you have been terminated after your have made your enquiry please call us to discuss further.
This is a further classic case of adverse action and your rights are under pinned under section 340 of the Fair Work Act and also the Australian and Consumer Competition Laws. These claims are challenging and briefing an experienced lawyer will greatly assist in articulating your adverse action claim at Fair Work and the Federal Circuit Court.
I work as a case management officer for a large and reputable social welfare organisation but regrettably over the last 6 months, I have unearthed serious breaches of the law and ethical issues in how we are managing our client welfare services. My manager said we are under resourced and we can do nothing about this. A short period later, HR called me into the office and terminated my employment. How can Connect Legal help?
This is a case of you exercising your workplace rights pursuant to s 340 of the Fair Work Act and the Work Health and Safety Act (NSW) 2011. The client welfare issues that you have raised strike at the heart of the Respondent’s social welfare model in that they have to safeguard their client’s rights and investigate any fundamental breaches of the services provided and their wellbeing. Yes, HR has called you in and has raised a flimsy excuse to terminate you, but deep down it is because of your workplace rights. Connect Legal can conduct extensive phone discussions and if need be come closer to your home for a face to face interview. There are a number of applications we can lodge such as an unfair dismissal claim or an adverse action claim and all the work will be undertaken on a no win no fee basis.
I work as a transport allocator in a large transport distribution company and lately, I have raised serious concerns about driver fatigue management issues and overloading. I have told management we cannot let these drivers and trucks on the road because what we are doing is fundamentally unsafe and breaching the law. HR has now gotten involved, called me into a meeting and saying I’m not communicating well with the drivers and sometimes deliveries are late, has suspended me and I think will be terminating my employment. How can Connect Legal assist?
As a transport allocator, you have fundamental safety issues to adhere under the relevant transport management and chain of responsibility acts and the Work Health and Safety Act (NSW) 2011. Driver fatigue management and overlading of trucks is a very serious work health and safety issue and since you’ve been raising these matters that could be the deep underlying reason they’ve called you in alleging very short term performance issues. Connect Legal has helped numerous individuals within the transport industry from Sydney, country NSW, Australia-wide who have raised these types of chain of responsibility and overloading issues. If over the next 2-3 days, your employment is terminated, ring Connect Legal as a matter of urgency and we will gladly assist you as either an unfair dismissal or an adverse action claim.
I work in the credit card department of a large equipment manufacturer and supplier and have noticed some serious flaws in how we are approving credit. I have told my manager this company cannot afford to spend the $100,000+ on equipment, their financials don’t stack up, I think we’re breaching credit and financing laws and his words are that we’ve got a budget to meet, we need to get the numbers up and to just get them approved. HR has just called me in and said I’m not approving enough loans, I’m taking too long and has issued me a warning and said if I don’t pick up my act, this could lead to my termination. How can Connect Legal assist?
As a credit controller, one of the fundamental issues is t ensure the credit you approve for any business, organisation or an individual so within their financial means and serviceability. Over lending to clients when you know they are unable to service those loans is a serious breach of corporate and financial laws and there could be serious implications for the organisation and maybe even yourself. We understand management has called you in and raised performance issues, but rest assured this is all about you raising ethical issues and breaches of credit laws. Please keep detailed diary notes and if your employment is terminated, please ring out office for immediate help.
Connect Legal for over decades has diligently and quietly defended and safeguarded our client's employment and discrimination rights. The word " fight" conjures up images of undue stress and complexities and we wholeheartedly condemn the use of this word in legal literature. Connect Legal's philosophy is about defending and safeguarding client rights, which required discipline, diligence and extensive tea work. Yes results make take more time, but the landmark judgements we have obtained within the owner driver area, sham contracting, disability discrimination were because of our unique philosophy. Please see our judgement page.
Our legal services will be undertaken on a No Win No Fee basis as has been the case from inception when we commenced defending employee rights in the late 90s. We will provide a written costs agreement outlining our No Win No Fee policy and will provide an estimate of the applicable fees.