Paul Burns

Partner. Melbourne.

+613 9672 3323 |   |  vCard
Paul Burns

Paul is a partner in the Employment, Workplace Relations and Safety practice, who brings over 25 years of experience in assisting many of the leading Australian corporates achieve their workplace objectives.

Paul has a particular passion for partnering with clients on workplace reform strategies, both inside and outside of the bargaining cycle.  His in-depth knowledge of the complexities and challenges of the regulatory regime impacting on businesses in Australia enables effective strategies to be developed through a solution focused approach.

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Paul is a partner in the Employment, Workplace Relations and Safety practice, who brings over 25 years of experience in assisting many of the leading Australian corporates achieve their workplace objectives.

Paul has a particular passion for partnering with clients on workplace reform strategies, both inside and outside of the bargaining cycle.  His in-depth knowledge of the complexities and challenges of the regulatory regime impacting on businesses in Australia enables effective strategies to be developed through a solution focused approach.

Paul is also renowned for his expertise in managing complex corporate restructures and for providing advice on innovative (but compliant) contracting models to meet clients’ operational and business needs.

Paul’s standing as a market leading practitioner has enabled him to develop a practise which is truly national with a significant client base covering a diverse range of industries, including mining, energy, retail, manufacturing, finance, hospitality, emergency, financial services and construction.

To compliment the commercial acumen and technical expertise he has demonstrated in advising corporate clients, Paul is also renowned for his understanding of the complexities inherent in public sector employment arrangements, with strong relationships with agencies at the federal and state levels.

“Leading Lawyer – Employment ” Chambers Asia Pacific Guide, 2012 – 2018
Paul Burns

Paul's Expertise

  • Bargaining Lead advisor in two of the most high profile matters in 2017, being the Coles bargaining round for their supermarket operations, and the MOU dispute involving Cricket Australia and the Australian Cricketers Association.
  • Corporate restructures Lead employment advisor on recent demerger transactions involving the separation of the Dulux business from the Orica Group, and the Orora business from the AMCOR Group where the employment issue had significant complexities
  • Infrastructure projects Supported a broader commercial legal team by advising on and managing industrial matters associated with two of the most significant rail development projects in Victoria in recent times, being the Regional Rail Link Project in Victoria and the current Metro Tunnel Project.
  • Greenfield projects Lead advisor on employment matters relevant to Dulux’s new paint manufacturing facility in Merrifield, Victoria which commenced operation in October 2017.
  • Transfer of business and start-up businesses Acted for Stellar Asia Pacific in successfully defending their outsourcing model from union attack immediately following their start up to preserve and protect their preferred employment model.
  • Dispute management Acted for Coles in achieving Supreme Court injunctions to restrain unlawful conduct impacting their operations arising from a bargaining dispute between their contract partner operating a distribution centre and the National Union of Workers.

What others say

  • “Leading Lawyer – Employment ” Chambers Asia Pacific Guide, 2012 – 2018
  • “"One of the elite operators in Australia," "a very authentic and humble individual who engenders a very comfortable and engaging environment" and "a true technical expert with a strong client focus." ” Chambers Asia Pacific Guide, 2018

Paul's Thinking