Enterprise Agreements

Based on the contribution of Craig Dowling and Neill Campbell for The Law Handbook 2016, published by Fitzroy Legal Service, originally amended by ClareMcKenzie for the NT Law Handbook, as amended by Bradley Allen Love Lawyers, Canberra, by Gabrielle Sullivan, May Oboodi and Robert Allen and current to March 2018.

Enterprise Agreements are instruments which specify matters relating to the relationship between an employer and employee. In effect, enterprise agreements displace an Award that would otherwise apply to an employee. The Fair Work Act sets out the mandatory terms which must be included in all enterprise agreements, as well as unlawful terms which are not permitted.

Enterprise agreements can be lodged with the Fair Work Commission after a period of negotiation between the employer and employee, known as “enterprise bargaining”. Often, employees will be represented by their union during the enterprise bargaining process.

The Fair Work Commission can approve the enterprise agreement if it is satisfied that the employees covered by it would be better off overall if the agreement applied to them than if the relevant Modern Award applied. This is known as the better off overall test (BOOT).

A list of enterprise agreements can be found at www.fwc.gov.au

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