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Norman Waterhouse

Employment – Update: Federal Government intervenes in casual employee entitlement 'test case'

As you may recall from our recent publication, the Full Court of the Federal Court of Australia in WorkPac Pty Ltd v Skene [2018] FCAFC 131 (Skene) recently held that an employee, Mr Skene, who was deemed to be a casual employee by his employer, WorkPac Pty Ltd (WorkPac) was entitled to annual leave upon termination of his employment.

A similar matter has again been agitated by WorkPac in recent proceedings. WorkPac are seeking declarations that a former employee, Mr Robert Rossato, was a casual employee and therefore is not entitled to paid leave entitlements. Interestingly, the Commonwealth Jobs and Industrial Relations Minister Kelly O’Dwyer has now intervened in the proceedings.

Although it is not clear what the Federal Government will be arguing with respect to this matter, their involvement alone demonstrates the significance of the matter. This is especially so given the impact any decision may have on Australian employers engaging casual employees. Minister O’Dwyer has already commented on the Government’s concerns arising from Skene, in particular the lack of discussion regarding the legal right for small business employers to offset an obligation against payments already made for the same entitlements.

We will continue to provide updates in respect of these proceedings. For more specific information on any of the material contained in this article please contact Sathish Dasan on +61 8 8210 1253 or or Anastasia Gravas on +61 8 8217 1331 or


23 October 2018



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