On 27 October 2017, amendments to the Fair Work Act 2009 (FW Act) imposing increased responsibilities on franchisors and holding companies for breaches of workplace laws and instruments by franchisees and subsidiaries came into operation.

Franchisors and holding companies may be held responsible for contraventions by franchisees and subsidiaries of the provisions in the FW Act dealing with the entitlements of employees under awards, enterprise agreements, the National Employment Standards and other specified provisions of the FW Act, if the franchisor or holding company knew or could reasonably be expected to have known that the contravention would occur.

The legislation includes a defence for a franchisor or holding company that is able to demonstrate that it took reasonable steps to prevent the contravention by the franchisee or subsidiary.

If you would like more information about the proposed legislative amendments, please contact Ai Group’s Workplace Advice Service on 1300 55 66 77.

If you would like assistance in structuring franchisee arrangements, please contact your local employment, workplace and industrial lawyer in Sydney, Newcastle, Wollongong, Melbourne or Brisbane or email Ai Group Workplace Lawyers at info@aigroupworkplacelawyers.com.au.

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