This website is for use by legal professionals (lawyers and law practices) only. If the information is used incorrectly, you could risk losing money or your legal rights. If you are a member of the public looking for free advice about your legal problems please visit legalaid.vic.gov.au, or contact our Legal Help advice line on 1300 792 387, Monday to Friday from 8 am to 6 pm. 

If you decide to use or rely on the information or make decisions based on the information in this website (which VLA does not recommend) VLA is not liable to you or any third party in any way for any loss, damage, costs or expenses you or they may suffer or incur as a result.

Services and info for clients about employment

Services and info for clients about employment.

VLA produces information on the website for clients about this topic.

See VLA resources for clients.

Commonwealth Government

A new resource has been developed to explain to employees and to employers what their rights and obligations are when an employee is pregnant, taking maternity leave or returning to work.

See Australian Government—Supporting working parents(opens in a new window).

Australian Human Rights Commission (AHRC)

The Australian Human Rights Commission website has information to assist employees who believe they have been discriminated against by their employer.

See:

Or see the homepage—Australian Human Rights Commission (AHRC)(opens in a new window).

Information about volunteers, liability and protection

Safe Work Australia

This body is made up of members representing the Commonwealth and each state and territory, members representing the interests of employees and employers. The aim of the organisation is to develop policy to improve the work health and safety and worker's compensation arrangements across Australia. It has information for volunteers and organisations about issues related to volunteering.

See Safe Work Australia—Volunteers and the new work health safety laws(opens in a new window).

Information about employment and money

Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC)

The ASIC site, Money smart, has the following resources for employees:

  • Starting work
  • Losing your job
  • Workplaces
  • Redundancy.

Go to the 'life events and you' in ASIC—Money smart(opens in a new window).

Support for independent contractors

Business Victoria

This site has information for independent contractors that explains how to make simple contracts, information about dispute resolution, and a decision tool that helps to determine whether a person is an independent contractor or an employee. They also have 'The essential handbook' designed to assist independent contractors with 'all they need to know about independent contracting'.

See Business Victoria—Contractors(opens in a new window)

Australian Government

The Business website has information to support independent contractors and small businesses. Ask a question by email, live chat or by phone.

See Australian Government—Business(opens in a new window).

Long service leave

Business Victoria

This Victorian Government site set up to assist small businesses in Victoria has a calculator to help businesses plan for staff long service leave entitlements.

See 'Long service leave Victoria' in Business Victoria—Hiring and managing staff(opens in a new window).

Victorian Equal Opportunity & Human Rights Commission (VEOHRC)

This Victorian statutory body assists people to resolve complaints about discrimination, sexual harassment or religious vilification. The Commission is also responsible for raising awareness of the Charter for Human Rights and Responsibilities, although it does not have any role in handling complaints under the Charter.

For information about discrimination in employment, see:

Live chat

The commission also has a 'live chat' function that allows people to get help online between 9 am and 5 pm.

To access this service click on the Live chat icon in Victorian Equal Opportunity & Human Rights Commission (VEOHRC)(opens in a new window).

Fair Work Commission

The Fair Work Commission is the national workplace relations tribunal. It is independent of government and is responsible for:

  • enterprise bargaining
  • industrial action
  • resolving workplace related disputes
  • termination of employment
  • setting the minimum wage and employment conditions.

The website includes complaint forms, publications and the small business fair dismissal code.

See Fair Work Commission(opens in a new window).

The commission has launched a workplace advice service in partnership with a range of private law firms, community legal centres and in some cases legal aid commissions.

Eligible people can get one hour of advice at the commission offices or by phone. Both employers and employees may be eligible if they are unrepresented. This means that people who are union members or members of employer associations are encouraged to seek assistance from those organisations.

See Fair Work Commission—Where to get legal advice(opens in a new window).

Fair Work Ombudsman

The role of the Fair Work Ombudsman is to promote harmony in the workplace. It does this by educating employers and employees about their rights and responsibilities. It investigates complaints about breaches to the Fair Work Act 2009. It may take legal action to enforce the law if necessary.

The site has information about many workplace issues such as a checklist for new employees, leave, awards, pay and how to lodge a complaint.

See:

There are also resources for CALD communities on the ombudsman site.

See Fair Work Ombudsman—Language help(opens in a new window).

JobWatch

This specialist community legal centre provides free and confidential information and referral service to Victorian employees about their rights at work. Their website had publication and information sheets about a variety of employment related issues such as:

  • job hunting traps
  • superannuation
  • casual employment
  • termination of employment
  • what to do about harassment and bullying

To find office hours and phone contact details see JobWatch.

For publications see JobWatch—Employment factsheets and resources.

WorkSafe Victoria

WorkSafe Victoria is responsible for enforcing Victoria's occupational health and safety laws. It provides workplace injury insurance for employers, helps injured workers to return to the workforce, manages a compensation scheme and has a role in trying to avoid injuries happening in the workforce.

Select from the following:

Or go directly to WorkSafe Victoria.

WorkCover Assist

This free service is provided by WorkSafe Victoria to help injured workers who have a dispute. They may help by trying to negotiate with Worksafe or the self-insurer before a conciliation conference. If this fails they may assist at the Accident Compensation Conciliation Service.

See WorkCover Assist.

Accident Compensation Conciliation Service

This independent statutory body helps to resolve disputes between all parties (worker, employer, Workcover agents or self insurers) about compensation entitlements.

See Accident Compensation Conciliation Service.

Victorian Trades Hall Council

Injures workers who are union members can get independent advice and support if they have a dispute with workcover.

See Union assist.

Comcare

Comcare is responsible for the implementation of the Commonwealth policies in relation to health, safety and welfare of workers who are covered by the Comcare scheme (Commonwealth Government and other prescribed agency employees).

See:

Law Institute Victoria

The Law Institute of Victoria (LIV) Legal Referral Service provides client referrals to lawyers across Victoria. The referral service operates a telephone service during business hours and an online service through the LIV website.

Referrals are tailored to meet client needs and provide a listing of up to three law firms practising in a particular area of law. All law firms participating in the referral service undertake to see clients for the first 30 minutes free of charge. This interview can be used to determine the nature of the legal issue and discuss the available options. Normal fees are charged after the first 30 minutes or if work needs to be prepared on the client’s behalf.

Phone (03) 9607 9550.

See Law Institute Victoria—Legal Referral Service(opens in a new window).

This is VLA's online referral booking and information tool.

See Legal Help Online (Orbit(opens in a new window)).

Court, CLC, FRC and VLA panels locator

Use Toby's maps to locate community legal centres, courts and private lawyers on the Victoria Legal Aid panel. Search for a list of services near where the caller lives. Search by postcode, name of organisation, phone number or suburb. Tick/untick the boxes to select the search categories.

Do not hit enter to avoid searching globally. Hit F5 to undo this global search.

See Google maps link for CLCs and 29A panellists(opens in a new window).

For Generalist CLCs and Local Government Agencies see Google maps link for General CLCs(opens in a new window).

Updated