Unfair Dismissal

Time Limits Apply
There are strict time limits for unfair dismissal actions. Don’t delay and miss your opportunity.

Losing your job can be stressful and confusing.

In Western Australia, a termination can be unfair for a range of reasons, including:

  • the reasons for the dismissal weren’t valid;
  • the procedure used was defective;
  • the dismissal had a particularly harsh effect on you.

Nicholas Legal offers a fixed fee service for preparing and filing an unfair dismissal claim. Call or arrange an appointment in our Perth or Fremantle office to discuss your claim.

Compensation for Unfair Dismissal

Compensation for unfair dismissal is based on a number of factors including loss of wages, reinstatement, your efforts to find other work and the reasons for dismissal. Where compensation applies it is calculated using your weekly income, capped at a maximum of 6 months (or $71,000).

Do You Have A Claim?

To decide whether you might have a claim under the National unfair dismissal laws as they apply in Western Australia, a range of factors need to be considered.

What Is Unfair Dismissal

Your Employer: Were you employed by a Constitutional Corporation? A Pty Ltd company is a constitutional corporation, while a Sole Trader is not.

Your Employment Status: Were you an employee or a true independent contractor? Independent contractors are not covered by unfair dismissal laws. But keep in mind that your employment status is determined by law, and just because your employer says they hired you as an independent contractor does not mean you are one in the eyes of the law.

Reason for Termination: Unfair dismissal law may apply if you were terminated or forced to resign. It does not cover you if you reached the end of a fixed term contract or received a redundancy.

Time Employed: Unfair dismissal laws will likely not apply if you were employed for less than 6 months (or 12 months for small businesses with less than 15 employees).

Award/Enterprise Agreement/Income Cap: To be eligible to take action under unfair dismissal laws you need to be covered by an award or enterprise agreement OR earn less than $142,000.
However, if you were earning over $142,000 and weren't covered by and award or enterprise agreement, you may still be able to make an unlawful dismissal claim (general protections), a claim of common law breach of contract or take action under the Competition and Consumer Act 2010.

Fairness: Was there something unfair about your termination? If there was nothing unfair, you will not be able to take action under unfair dismissal laws.

Next Steps

If after reading through these considerations you would like to find out more, now is the time to get in touch and discuss your case.

You will need to start the process by filing your application with the Fair Work Commission - Nicholas Legal offers a Fixed Fee service for preparing and filing your application.

Unfair Dismissal vs Unlawful Dismissal

While Unfair Dismissal law may apply where termination of employment is harsh, unjust or unreasonable, you may have an alternative claim for:
Unlawful dismissal: where a termination is in breach of the general protections of the Fair Work Act;
possibly through discrimination or required notice periods, or under contract or common law.

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