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What Will the Fair Work Amendment Bill Mean for Your Business?

If you are still grappling with what the Fair Work Act 2009 means for your business, don't feel alone. Chances are you are one of many small businesses that do. The good news is that there are some key obligations you need to be aware of and the Fair Work Ombudsman produces some great best practice guides that provide plain English explanations about your obligations.


Migration Updates - October 2013

The Department of Immigration and Citizenship has changed its name to the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) following a major structure overhaul.

Beyond the well-documented focus on border protection, it is unclear as to what changes, if any, the new Government will make to the employer sponsored visa programs. In particular, it is yet to be seen what the change of government will mean for the proposed Labour Market Testing. This had been due to be implemented from late October or November, but there has been no indication of the specific requirements and expectations. Hamilton Watts will provide further guidance immediately upon any developments in these areas.

Some clients may be interested to note that the new Minister for Immigration Scott Morrison has directed the Resource Agreements Section to make a number of changes to the way in which Labour Agreements for the resources sector are processed/decided. Again, it is not yet clear what these changes will involve, but further information is expected in the next 1-2 weeks. We will provide this information once it is available.


Importing as a Way to Expand Your Business

This can be a great opportunity for you to increase your sales offering and expand your business, if you get it right (which is the tricky bit). Here are some tips to help.


Thinking of Getting Into a Franchise Business?

If this is an option you are considering, there are lots of things to take into account. To make the right decision about whether a franchise is right for you, you will need to delve into lots of information from the franchisor and you will definitely need to take a good look at the fine print. Your investigations should also include how the franchisor operates and you need to speak with existing owners who operate under the franchise.


Harmonised Work Health and Safety Laws

Australia is undergoing some major changes to its legal approach to work health and safety laws, with a number of States already adopting the WHS Regulations and Codes of Practice (e.g.: see www.safeworkaustralia.gov.au ) as from 1 January 2012. This has come about because in July 2008, the Council of Australian Governments formally committed to the harmonisation of work health and safety laws by signing an Intergovernmental Agreement for Regulatory and Operational Reform in Occupational Health and Safety ("IGA"). Under this agreement the State and Territory governments agreed that a model Act and model Regulations would be developed and then enacted consistently across Australia. This said, each State and Territory along with the Commonwealth continue to have responsibility for the regulation of occupational health and safety in their jurisdictions.