Employment Law Reforms and Case Update

Explore the most significant issues, reforms and legislative developments in employment law for 2024. Hear from a leading panel of employment law specialists, as you scrutinise proposed future reforms and impacts of recent legislative changes. Get your annual update on general protections cases and a practical guide to general protections proceedings. 243W14  
Thursday, 21 March 2024

Natasha Leedman, Principal – Natasha Leedman, Specialist Workplace Lawyer & Consultant

9.00am to 10.00am Overview of Fair Work Legislation Amendment (Closing Loopholes) Bill 2023 (Cth)

Presented by Samantha Maddern, Partner, Workplace Relations, Employment and Safety, Mills Oakley

10.00am to 11.00am 2022-2023 Legislative Changes in Review
  • Fair Work Legislation Amendment (Secure Jobs, Better Pay) Act
    • Enterprise bargaining: review of amendments
    • Flexible working arrangements
    • Fixed term contracts
  • Protecting Worker Entitlements Act: How do the changes to parental leave work in practice (and associated gender reporting-type changes to law)

Presented by Renae Harding, Partner, Workplace Relations + Safety and Dominique Hartfield, Special Counsel, Jackson McDonald

11.15am to 12.15pm General Protections: Implications of Qantas Airways and Other Case Updates

Discuss the impact of the High Court’s decision in Qantas Airways Limited v Transport Workers Union. This decision provided guidance on the meaning of “workplace right”, the challenges for employers of meeting the reverse burden of proof, and issues with outsourcing. The seminar will also cover the implications of other significant recent General Protections cases.

Presented by Nicholas Ellery, Barrister, Francis Burt Chambers

12.15pm to 1.15pm A Practical Guide to “General Protections” Proceedings in the Federal Court and Federal Circuit and Family Court

A practical guide on how to commence or defend a general protections proceeding and the main steps along the way, including:

  • Discovery
  • Affidavits: Practice of ‘Conversation Evidence’: Kanes Hire Pty Ltd v Anderson Aviation Australia Pty Ltd 
  • The hearing
  • Damages

Presented by Maria Saraceni, Barrister, Francis Burt Chambers


Attend and earn 4 CPD units in Substantive Law
This program is applicable to practitioners from all States & Territories

11.00am to 11.15am Morning Tea


Nicholas Ellery, Barrister, Francis Burt Chambers
Nick is a barrister focussing on employment, industrial relations and workplace safety issues. He works with leading industries in WA with large and complex workforces such as government, healthcare, maritime, oil and gas, construction, mining and others. He has been regularly recognised as a leading practitioner in various industry guides such as Best Lawyers, Chambers, Doyles Guide and others. At the forefront of legal employment issues Nick regularly provides training, workshops and news commentary. He is a national committee member at the Australian Labour Law Association, and was Partner in Charge of the Corrs Perth office for over 10 years, before joining the Bar in early 2023.

Ms. Maria Saraceni, Barrister, Francis Burt Chambers
Maria Saraceni is a barrister practising in regulatory and compliance law - particularly in workplace relations; employment-related matters and occupational safety and health. She is also an active non-executive director an accomplished public speaker and an Adjunct Professor at Murdoch University.

Samantha Maddern, Partner, Mills Oakley
Samantha has worked across a variety of roles in human resources, employee relations and employment law, including secondments at INPEX Australia and AMMA (WA), as an in-house lawyer for a mining company, and as an employee relations consultant for WA’s leading employer organisation. This diverse experience means her advice is practical and solutions-focussed as she helps her clients (large or small) successfully navigate the complexities and challenges that frequently arise in the modern Australian workplace and to effectively manage workplace risk – both the expected and the unexpected. Sam’s clients come from a broad range of sectors but, in particular, the mining, oil & gas, tertiary education, and not-for-profits sectors. Sam is an avid North Melbourne supporter and hoping for a MUCH brighter future now that Clarko has arrived.

Renae Harding, Partner, Jackson McDonald
Renae Harding practises in all aspects of workplace relations and safety offering expertise across all aspects of employment, industrial relations and occupational safety and health laws, both in the private and public sectors. The nationalisation of workplace relations and safety legislation together with her previous experience working on both employment and safety related matters in NSW, VIC, SA, NT and Qld mean that Renae is able to provide assistance not only in Western Australia but throughout Australia.Renae is known and respected for her ability to swiftly identify the issues, provide clients with clear advice that is easy to understand and then work with clients to develop response strategies that address both the client's legal and commercial objectives. This has resulted in her becoming a trusted advisor to many clients and HR and Safety advisors who will call Renae for advice as issues arise. The added advantage of this approach is that it will often enable the client to resolve the issue before it progresses to a formal claim. Understanding your business and the challenges your business faces is critical to ensuring that our legal advice and recommendations meet your needs. Recognising this Renae is often out on site conducting inspections, meeting with relevant personnel, conducting site training, both safety or employment related, or liaising with regulatory authorities such as WorkSafe, Energy Safety, Resources Safety and the Fair Work Ombudsman. Whether you are looking for tactical guidance during union negotiations, assistance drafting employment contracts and policies, representation during unfair dismissal proceedings or guidance in dealing with and responding to a critical incident, you can be assured that Renae has the expertise to assist.

Ms. Dominique Hartfield, Special Counsel, Jackson McDonald
Dominique is a Special Counsel in the Workplace Relations and Safety team. She specialises in providing commercially focused and strategic advice and representation on a wide range of employment, human resources and industrial relations matters and occupational health and safety. Her experience includes advising local, national and global clients from a broad range of industries. Dominique advises on the full range of employment issues, including helping employers understand their rights and obligations under the State and Federal industrial relations systems, the interpretation of employment legislation and industrial instrument, large and small scale investigations, bullying and harassment complaints, managing unwell employees, the redundancy/restructuring process, performance and misconduct issues, termination issues (including restraints of trade), industrial relations issues and enterprise agreement making and due diligence. She is experienced in drafting and reviewing a range of employment related contracts and policies. Dominique has appeared, both as instructing solicitor and independently, in a range of employment related conciliations and tribunal/court matters. Having previously worked for many years at a global firm, Dominique also has experience in helping clients with employee mobility issues (overseas transfer/secondments), the employment aspects of cross-border transactions, and project managing foreign counsel advice, for clients who have operations in overseas jurisdictions.


Employment Law Reforms and Case Update


Single Session
Thursday, 21 March 2024
9.00am to 1.15pm Australia/Perth
CPD Points 4
Face to Face 20240624 20240321

Face to Face

Online 20240624 20240321


On Demand 20240624 20240321

On Demand

Parmelia Hilton

Level 1, Meeting Room, 14 Mill Street, Perth


Nearby Public Transport:
Train Stations - The Esplanade Station
Bus Interchange - St Georges Terrace Cloisters Green

Parking Information

Parking is not included in you registration. Here are some options below:

Parmelia Hilton - Valet Parking only - Click here to view rates 
Convention Centre - 100 metres from Parmelia Hilton.  Click here to view rates