Unfair dismissal is a complex and often emotionally charged issue. We help both employers and employees faced with an unfair dismissal situation.
Reach out to us sooner rather than later, as strict time limits apply.

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Every year almost 15,000 unfair dismissal applications are lodged with the Australian Fair Work Commission.
As our most populous state, many of these happen in New South Wales and are filed at the Sydney Registry of the Commission.
Content on this page is focussed on employees. Employers should visit the Employers: Unfair Dismissal and Adverse Action Claims page for relevant information.


If you think you might have been unfairly dismissed from work, then please contact us so that we can help you determine if you have a claim and (if you do) then provide the legal assistance to make your claim.

If you have a valid claim we will work with you to offer a fee arrangement that suits your personal situation.  This may include No Win, No Fee or Fixed Fee arrangements.

Do I have a claim?

We’ll figure this out for you.  We’ve worked with hundreds of employees who believe that they have been unfairly dismissed.  We can help by first reviewing your situation and assist you in filling in an Application for Unfair Dismissal Remedy.  As part of this process, we will obviously listen to your story to identify key information that will affect your eligibility for a claim.

For example:

  • if your employer has more than 15 employees, you will need to have done 6 months’ continuous work with your employer to be eligible to make a claim;
  • if your employer has less than 15 employees, you need to have completed at least 12 months’ continuous work with your employer to be eligible to make a claim.

We will carefully review the details of your matter before deciding whether you should make a claim for unfair dismissal.

Important Note

Even if you don’t meet the requirements for an unfair dismissal claim, you may still be able have a chance to make a claim against your employer.  If your employment was terminated because you made a complaint about your workplace environment, because you were being bullied or harassed or your work entitlements for example, then you should contact us, because we may be able to assist you with making an Adverse Action claim.

Ready to tell us your story?

For a no obligation review of your situation please contact us now.

If you think I have a valid claim what happens next?

In New South Wales, unfair dismissal proceedings are commenced by filing out a Form F2, Application for Unfair Dismissal Remedy with the Fair Work Commission.  We will prepare this application for you.  We need to point out however, that if you are employed in the public service, then you will need to file your application in the registry of the Industrial Relations Commission of New South Wales.

Once we have established that you are eligible to commence an application the next step is to work on the strength of your claim.  There are two important points to work on – they are:

  1. whether your employer followed all the right procedures to dismiss you from work; and
  2. whether, considering all the circumstances, it was fair to dismiss you from work. In other words – did the employer rely on a ‘valid reason’ to dismiss you from work?

If we believe that you have a valid claim for unfair dismissal and good prospects for success, then we will act for you under a fee arrangement that suits your personal situation.  This may include No Win, No Fee or Fixed Fee arrangements.  Whether you are based in Sydney or elsewhere in New South Wales we can easily represent you as often a face to face meeting is not required.

Important Note

It is very important to note that an employee only has 21 days from the date of dismissal to commence an Application for Unfair Dismissal Remedy.  So, you need to act quickly if you wish to challenge the fairness of the decision to dismiss you from work.

What does the Fair Work Commission consider?

As you might imagine, the facts of each unfair dismissal case are different but there are ‘broad categories’ of workplace incidents that have been reviewed in the Fair Work Commission – for example:

  • poor performance – not meeting performance indicators set by the employer
  • fighting in the workplace
  • being drunk at work
  • not following a health and safety directive
  • not following the employer’s policy

However, just because your employer alleges you have engaged in certain behaviour, doesn’t mean that you can’t still pursue your case.  This is illustrated in a leading case on the area that dealt with fighting in the workplace and applies to workers in Melbourne/Victoria.

In AWU-FIME Amalgamated Union v Queensland Alumina Ltd we see that the Commission identified that fighting at work does not necessarily give an employer an automatic right to dismiss an employee from their job.  Other circumstances need to be considered.  The Commission said:

The extenuating circumstances may, and often do, concern the circumstances in which the fight occurred as well as other considerations such as the length of service of the employee, including their work record, and whether he or she was in a supervisory position.  As to the circumstances of the fight, relevant considerations include whether the dismissed employee was provoked and whether he or she was acting in self-defence. 

No case should be judged without considering all of the facts and circumstances involved.

Don’t delay, talk to us now

At Anderson Gray Lawyers, we are happy to spend time listening to your story to understand how your dismissal happened.  If we think you have a genuine and legitimate claim, then we’ll work with you on achieving a fair and reasonable outcome within a fee arrangement that suits your personal situation.  This may include No Win, No Fee or Fixed Fee arrangements.

Ready to tell us your story?  For a no obligation review of your situation contact us now.


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