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Michael Michalandos

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When considering bullying in the workplace, it is important to remember that bullying doesn’t just occur amongst peers or down the chain of command – managers can also be bullied by staff. This is often referred to as ‘upwards’ or ‘reverse’ bullying. In this post we look at a case of upwards bullying from across the ditch (McGowan v Nutype Accessories Limited AC 11/03 [2003] NZEmpC 16) and consider steps that might assist employers to…

When do they start? The new laws will apply to bullying from 1 January 2014. Where are the laws in the legislation? Part 6-4B of the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth). What is the claim? A “worker” who reasonably believes that he or she has been bullied at work can apply to the Fair Work Commission (FWC) for an order to stop the bullying. Who is a worker? “Worker” is defined broadly by referring to…

From 1 January 2014, the Fair Work Commission (FWC) will have new powers to hear complaints from workers who believe they have been bullied at work. This is the first time that a specific jurisdiction has been established to deal with bullying in Australia, or elsewhere. This may come as a surprise to many employers, given that an allegation of bullying seems to be stapled onto every response to an over-enthusiastic performance discussion with an…

Commonwealth Bank of Australia v Barker [2013] FCAFC 83 In a recent decision, the Full Court of the Federal Court has confirmed that it is an implied term of every employment contract that an employer must not behave in a way which is likely to seriously damage or destroy the relationship of trust and confidence between the employer and the employee without reasonable cause. But what does this mean? It seems that the answer is…