JLU: Junior Lawyers' Union

Asserting the rights of junior lawyers, who have much more power than they realise.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Letter to Office of Workplace Services

Office of Workplace Services
GPO Box 9887
Melbourne VIC 3000

May 2006

Dear Sir/Madam,

Hours of work – "reasonable additional hours"

I understand from your website that one of your core activities is to provide "advice and assistance to employers, workers and organisations about compliance and enforcement under the Workplace Relations Act 1996".

Consequently, I am after some guidance as to what you would consider "reasonable additional hours" for the purposes of the 38 hour week provision (section 226) of the Workplace Relations Act 1996 (Cth), given the following hypothetical circumstances:

  • Employee is a junior lawyer in Victoria at a large and highly profitable commercial law firm.
  • Employee is earning just under $XX,XXX [actual amount included in letter - SS] per year.
  • Employee is generally and implicitly expected to work in excess of 38 hours every week, with no specific notice given by the employer of the occasions on which the employee is required to work additional hours.
  • Employee has no spouse or dependants.

I understand that a more comprehensive examination of the circumstances may be required before you could provide me with a precise figure. However, if the Act is to have any coherence whatsoever, and if you will be enforcing breaches of this provision, I expect you must have some idea of the hours – ie. a range (such as 5-10 additional hours) – that you would consider "reasonable" in the circumstances.

I look forward to receiving your response and the resultant clarity.

Thanking you in advance,

Shop Steward,


Anonymous Anonymous said...

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17 February, 2007 04:56  

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