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QLD What are My Employee Rights Regarding Work Days and Hours?

Discussion in 'Employment Law Forum' started by Ricardo Tinear, 12 June 2016.

  1. Ricardo Tinear

    12 June 2016
    Likes Received:
    Hi guys,

    I have been employed on a full-time basis for 2.5years and have had a good working relationship with the directors and colleagues. My full-time role and contracted days are Monday-Friday 9am-5pm, 38 hours per week. It was put to me that I would be required elsewhere in the business and was sent a roster detailing my "new" hours.

    This change meant that I would now be required to work Tuesday-Saturday with shift times varying throughout the week and including an 8pm finish time on one of the days.

    I have summarized the changes below

    -changed my contracted days without my consent
    - changed my contracted hours without my consent or consulting me on my out of work commitments
    - the expectation of fulfiling 2 full-time roles
    - changing my role without my consent
    - expect me to fulfil a role that's outside of my job description and have no experience in
    - have an ops manager who is capable of fulfiling the role but refuse to give him the duties
    - have made it unrealistic for me to fulfil the role I was employed to do
    - no agreed end to time needed to spend in the new role
    - won't hire a store manager

    I just want to know my employee rights on this are. It doesn't seem fair and certainly doesn't feel right that they can do this.

    I feel I am being used to fill a gap instead of them hiring a manager to save money. Also note that my current position is still needed In the business and my workload is already quite high.

  2. Sophea

    Sophea Guest

    The basic rule is that an employer cannot change your employment contract without asking you first or providing you with prior notice of the proposed change. This is especially the case if your employer is trying to change fundamental terms in your contract such as your wage, the hours you work, or your status as full-time or casual.

    By altering fundamental terms in an employment agreement, your employer is essentially creating a new contract of employment. If you do not agree to the new contract, you may be able to claim for breach of your existing employment contract however if you continue to work under the new conditions without protesting the change you may be indicating or implying you agree to the change.

    You should indicate to your employer that you disagree with the proposed changes to your employment in writing. If you do not agree to the proposed change, your employer can change your contract without your agreement only if they are allowed to do so by law or under the terms of the original contract or an award or agreement that applies.

    Many industrial agreements also require employers to consult with employees before going ahead with a major change that will significantly affect the employees’ employment. So under these agreements, even if your employer has the power to make unilateral changes to your work arrangements, they can still be in breach if they don’t consult you first. Sometimes, your employer can make reasonable changes to your working arrangements as part of their power to give lawful and reasonable instructions to employees.

    If you resign because you believe that your employer’s actions leave you with no other option, you may be able to make a claim for unfair dismissal or some other termination-based claim. You will have to argue that you were constructively dismissed. It is not easy to do this and, you should get personalised legal advice before taking any drastic action.

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