Towards an Understanding of Standard Employment Relationships under Australian Labour Law

Australian Journal of Labour Law, No. 20, p. 123, 2007

U of Melbourne Legal Studies Research Paper No. 376

37 Pages Posted: 19 Feb 2009

Date Written: February 18, 2009

Abstract

The standard employment relationship of full-time work pursuant to an ongoing employment contract is under considerable challenge. Yet, while there is a sense that standard employment relationships (SERs) reflect the 'deep structure' of Australian labour law, key questions have not been fully addressed: What are the elements of such relationships? While such employment is usually assumed to be full-time ongoing employment, is this assumption correct? In what sense are standard employees protected? What are the groups of non-standard workers and how does their protection compare with that extended to standard employees?

This article will take up these questions by examining the frameworks governing SERs and non-SERs under the Workplace Relations Act 1996 (Cth) before and after the enactment of the WorkChoices Act. It will conclude with preliminary comments on a new framework for standard employment relationships.

Keywords: standard employment, full-tim work, ongoing employment contract, standeard employment relationships, Workplace Relations Act 1996, WorkChoices Act

JEL Classification: K00, K3, K30, K33

Suggested Citation

Tham, Joo-Cheong, Towards an Understanding of Standard Employment Relationships under Australian Labour Law (February 18, 2009). Australian Journal of Labour Law, No. 20, p. 123, 2007 ; U of Melbourne Legal Studies Research Paper No. 376. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1346202

Joo-Cheong Tham (Contact Author)

University of Melbourne ( email )

185 Pelham Street
Carlton, Victoria 3053
Australia

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