WorkPac Pty Ltd v Rossato [2020] FCAFC 84

Labour hire company, WorkPac has sought special leave to appeal to the High Court of Australia to challenge the decision made by the Full Court of the Federal Court of Australia in WorkPac Pty Ltd v Rossato [2020] FCAFC 84 (Rossato).

In Rossato, the Federal Court held that a casual employee who was engaged on a regular, systemic and predictable basis was entitled to annual leave, personal/carer's leave, compassionate leave and public holidays as set out in the National Employment Standards of the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) even if they have been paid a casual loading. We considered this decision in our earlier publication.

Industrial Relations Minister, Christian Porter, intervened in the Federal Court case to support the submissions of WorkPac. The Minister has confirmed the Government would intervene in an appeal, stating the decision in the Federal Court has created "confusion and uncertainty . . . during a period where businesses are facing their greatest ever challenge". The Minister has also flagged that it may "be necessary to consider legislative options".

The Morrison Government has set up five industrial relations working groups which are "tasked with finding ways to urgently regrow jobs lost as a result of COVID-19". Working Group 1 is focused on casuals. The groups are designed to "tackle known problems within the IR system that are holding back Australia's economic recovery". We considered these working groups in our recent webinar which is accessible here.

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