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Categorising work relationships: Contract rules?

On 9 February 2022 the High Court of Australia handed down its decisions in CFMMEU v Personnel Contracting Pty Ltd [2022] HCA 1 (Construct) and in ZG Operations Australia Pty Ltd v Jamsek [2022] HCA 2 (Jamsek). These decisions, together with the Court’s earlier decision in WorkPac Pty Ltd v Rossato [2021] HCA 23 (Rossato), provide important guidance on the correct approach to the categorisation of work relationships in Australia. 

In particular, the Court has affirmed that the key determinant of the character of any given work relationship is to be found in the terms of the contract (whether written, oral or a combination thereof) between the parties. It has also severely circumscribed, if not entirely eliminated, the capacity of individuals and corporations to enter into trilateral arrangements such as those colloquially known as ‘Odco Contracts’.

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Employment and Labour

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