Workplace Helpdesk

One of the biggest benefits of subscribing to the Employment Law Practical Handbook is getting free access to the Workplace Helpdesk.

Whenever you have a legal issue at work and you need to be absolutely sure about the action to take, you can email the Workplace Helpdesk with your short query and get a response from our employment law experts within 72 hours.

It’s a completely free service, yours to use as regularly as you want if you are a subscriber to the handbook. And it doesn’t matter which area of Australian employment legislation your question relates to – or how insignificant you think it is – by emailing the Workplace Helpdesk, you’ll be able to move forward with complete confidence.

To give you an idea of how the helpdesk works, here are some sample questions from our subscribers – and how our experts responded to them…

Q: “In the current climate, our company has enforced a maximum 2-week leave allowance. However, I have an employee wanting to take Long Service Leave – are we able to enforce this ruling on Long Service Leave as well?”

A: Be careful applying a universal rule in either case. Instead I suggest you convey the message to employees in the following terms (The 4-week minimum I suggest for LSL reflects the QLD LSL Act):

“Given current economic conditions the Company will only grant periods of paid annual leave in excess of 2 weeks and long service leave in excess of 4 weeks if, having regards to the circumstances of each case, there is a fair balance between the needs of the business and the employee concerned.”

Q: “How can I ensure my confidential information is protected when employees leave?”

A: The best way to protect your confidential information is to ensure the employee’s contract of employment contains an ‘express restraint’ clause. This can require an ex-employee not to utilise your confidential information if they commence employment with a competitor to your business when their employment with you ends. You will need to make sure these restraints are properly drafted.

Q: “Can I speak to an employee’s doctor to confirm their inability to work?”

A: You will not be able to obtain a copy of a medical report or speak to an employee’s doctor, unless the employee consents. It is advisable to have the employee provide their consent in writing. This is because doctors often require a signed medical authority from their patients before they will release any medical reports or discuss a patient’s condition.

Imagine hiring a top employment law firm… having them at your beck and call… and NEVER getting billed! That’s what the Workplace Helpdesk gives you.