VIC Conflict Between National Employment Standards and Employment Contract?

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14 February 2016
Since reaching age 60, I have been working for 12 years as a casual teacher for an RTO under a signed Employee Contract termed 'Non-Award' and receiving the approximate 25% loading for casual employment. I do not know if this Agreement is a ratified one with the FWC. There is no Union in this RTO and they do not abide by any.

This Employment Contract labels me as casual and stipulates that for dismissal I receive 6 weeks written Notice or pay in lieu for instant dismissal. It also stipulates disagreements should be undertaken internally by the RTO management. I signed this agreement as I agreed with its content: casual employment; termination Process.

I received a pro-rata Long Service Leave payment last year of approximately 53% of the Full-Time employees being told my 10-year pro-rata hours worked were 7/13 of the 13 year LS allowance of full-time teachers.

When the First Term for this year arrived I was given a timetable for 3 weeks work, Timetables have always been given for a month in advance throughout my employment.

One week later my Supervisor informed me that there was no work for me from that date and that I was verbally terminated. He advised the reason being the low numbers of students for 2016 meant casuals had to be dismissed and I was the first.

After getting over the shock, I consulted my Employee Contract and wondered why I had not been given written Notice or pay in-lieu in accordance with my Employee Contract signed many years ago but saw no way of taking this up with the RTO as I no longer worked for them.

In investigating by myself, I am confused in that the National Employment Standards states casual employees do not have to be given written notice or pay in-lieu and I believe this is the interpretation the RTO took in my verbal dismissal.

Can someone please help where I now stand since I believe the Process of verbal dismissal taken by the RTO is not lawful under Employment Law?


Hi Wooloo,

If your employer has contracted with you on terms more generous than the NES, then I would think they are bound by those standards because of their contractual obligation toward you. NES would only override contract where terms are less favourable to you in contract.