The Workplace Advice Service is a free legal assistance program facilitated by the Fair Work Commission. The Commission offers this service because we understand that legal advice can reduce complexity and confusion, improve access to justice and minimise costs.
If you are an individual or a small business owner wanting to consult a lawyer on workplace issues involving dismissal, general protections or workplace bullying, the Commission can assess whether or not you may be eligible for the Service.
The Commission's role is to connect you with lawyers who may be able to help you. These lawyers work at law firms and other legal organisations that are completely independent of the Commission.
Using the Service is entirely separate from making a formal application to the Commission.
There is currently a high demand for the Workplace Advice Service. It can take us up to 5 days to reply to your request for help. It will be longer again before you have your appointment.
You only have 21 days from the date of dismissal to lodge an unfair dismissal or general protections dismissal application. If you need help faster than that, other legal help is available.
To be an individual eligible for assistance, you must:
To be a small business employer eligible for assistance, you must:
Check if you're eligible by using the Workplace Advice Service request form.
If you're eligible, you'll be asked to complete a request form.
The Commission will then either organise an appointment for you or put you in touch with a lawyer so that you can schedule an appointment.
Your appointment may take place by phone or in person.
Appointments generally go for 1 hour. Make sure you're prepared for your appointment by gathering any relevant documents and information. Think clearly about what you'd like to ask the lawyer so you can get the most out of your appointment. Bring a pen and paper so that you can write notes.
During the appointment, the lawyer will listen to your workplace issue or enquiry. They might ask you some questions to better understand the situation.
The lawyer may then offer advice on:
If there is time, the lawyer may offer advice on drafting submissions and witness statements or submitting relevant documents.