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What is an unlawful termination?

An unlawful termination happens when you are sacked for:

  • a temporary absence from work because of illness or injury
  • an absence from work during maternity leave or other parental leave
  • trade union membership (or non-membership)
  • trade union activity outside of work hours
  • temporary absence from work to volunteer for emergency services

An unlawful termination can also happen if you are sacked because of your:

  • race or skin colour
  • sex
  • sexual orientation
  • age
  • physical or mental impairment (disability)
  • marital status
  • family or carer’s responsibilities
  • pregnancy
  • religion
  • political opinion
  • national extraction or social origin

Importantly, an unlawful termination also happens if you are sacked for:

  • filing a complaint, or participating in proceedings, against an employer involving alleged violation of laws or regulations or recourse to competent administrative authorities

Who can make an unlawful termination claim?

An unlawful termination claim is similar to a general protections claim involving dismissal, but is available to employees who are not a National System Employee (someone who is not covered by a modern award), and employees who are National System employees, but are not eligible to make a general protections application.

How much compensation will you get?

You are eligible to receive a larger compensation payout if you win an unlawful termination claim (compared with an unfair dismissal claim), including damages for shock and distress.

In addition, your employer can be made to pay pecuniary penalties which are uncapped. 

We have extensive experience negotiating fair compensation for our clients who file wrongful termination claims.

You only have 21 days to file a claim

If you believe you have been unlawfully terminated from employment, you only have 21 days to file a claim.

Don’t delay – call our team of employment lawyers and industrial advocates today on 1300 045 466 or click here to register for a quick call back from one of our consultants.


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