Recruitment and labour hire compliance updates

Labour hire · Labour hire licensing

What to expect from the visa review

Moving critical occupations to the long-term visa list and expanding pathways to permanent residency are among key changes sought in the upcoming review of the skilled migration occupation lists.

"We would like to see a lot more critical occupations lead to permanent residency and be on the long-term [list], such as in the finance industry, IT, [and] hospitality," says Immigate managing director Diana Faraj.

Of the occupations that have been reclassified as short term, highly-skilled roles in finance, such as finance managers, are among those causing the most frustration for businesses, she says…

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Contractor wins damages for early termination

A recruitment company must pay $5k in damages after ending a contractor's placement early at the client's request.

Canberra Consulting engaged the project manager, who traded as Alignity Consulting, in September last year to deliver ICT software projects for its client, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

DFAT soon became dissatisfied with the contractor's performance, including his refusal to perform additional work without receiving additional payment.

It alleged his behaviour was "inappropriate", especially his resistance to taking instruction from supervising officers, and said he was not the right cultural fit for DFAT...

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Criminal record changes: recruiters to "tread carefully"

Recruiters now have more leeway to reject job applicants on the basis of a relevant criminal record, but are being urged to "tread carefully".

The Australian Human Rights Commission Regulations have been amended to provide greater clarity around how employers can make hiring decisions about job applicants with a criminal history.

In effect from 1 October 2019, the amendment states that distinction, exclusion or preference based on an irrelevant criminal record will be considered discrimination…

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Clear contracts crucial amid labour hire licensing confusion

Broad definitions of 'labour hire' are causing unnecessary licence applications and checks, adding to workload and confusion among both staffing suppliers and their clients.

Although they weren't designed to be wholly confined to just traditional labour hire, the state schemes' broad definitions are in practice capturing organisations beyond those originally intended, "which is now causing some issues", says Marque Lawyers workplace relations counsel Wesley Rogers.

Rogers urges all organisations to be vigilant about how supplier arrangements are structured by contract "and in substance", as one or more parties might inadvertently be captured by the 'labour hire provider' definition…

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More legal news affecting recruitment includes:

FWC considers "soft control" in new gig worker claim The "soft control" an organisation has over gig workers is an important factor in determining whether an employment relationship or true independent contracting exists, the Fair Work Commission has highlighted...

On-hire employee loses $30k claim over contract "mistake" A labour hire company that recorded the wrong pay rate in a worker's contract has convinced a tribunal it made an honest mistake and should not have to back-pay her more than $30k…

Union launches $12m casuals class action Labour hire company WorkPac is facing a new class action from hundreds of workers claiming they were misclassified as casuals…

Labour provider settles another underpayments claim Labour hire company Agri Labour Australia has settled another underpayments claim brought by former on-hire employees…

Costs ruling could reduce "appetite" for class actions In a landmark decision, the Federal Court has ruled that the funder of two class actions could potentially face a costs order if it loses, and must provide security upfront...

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