1 min read

Changes to Fair Work Act small claims matters

By Kelly Godfrey

On 1 July 2023, the jurisdictional limit for small claims proceedings under the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) (FW Act) will increase from $20,000 to $100,000. This will enable a greater number of applicants seeking to resolve claims under the FW Act access to a more efficient and cost-effective process to resolve their claims.

Such proceedings are generally conducted less formally and without lawyers (unless permission is provided for one to appear). Matters are usually resolved with only one hearing on the first court date, unless the court considers mediation to be a prudent first step. From 1 July 2023, the claims that can be run as small claims proceedings include where:

  • the compensation sought is $100,000 or less; and
  • the dispute is about:
    • a term of a National Employment Standard;
    • a term of a modern award;
    • a term of an enterprise agreement;
    • a workplace determination;
    • a national minimum wage order;
    • an equal remuneration order;
    • a safety net contractual entitlement; and
    • a conversion of casual employment to full-time or part-time employment.

This change will provide greater access to cheaper resolution methods and free up other court resources for bigger compensation claims.

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