Regional Express Holdings Ltd v Australian Federation of Air Pilots  FCAFC 147
In Australian jurisprudence, there has been much debate about the capacity of trade unions (or employee associations) to bring proceedings and take steps on behalf of employees who are not their members. The Australian Federation of Air Pilots (“AFAP”), an organisation of employees, commenced proceedings on behalf of a group of employees alleging that their employer, Regional Express Holdings Pty Ltd, contravened the General Protections provisions of the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) (“FW Act”). One of the issues before the Court was whether the AFAP could bring proceedings on behalf of people who were not its members. Under section 540 of the FW Act, an association of employees can only bring proceedings on behalf of an employee if the association is “entitled to represent the industrial interests” of the person. The Full Court held that the AFAP was entitled to bring proceedings on behalf of members as well as non-members who were eligible for membership under the rules of the organisation.
Mohammed Ayub v NSW Trains  FWCFB 5500
Under the FW Act, an employee has 21 days from the date their dismissal took effect to make an application to the Fair Work Commission seeking a remedy for an unfair dismissal. In that case, an employer purported to dismiss an employee on 14 January 2016 by sending him an email to his wife’s email address. The employee made an unfair dismissal application more than 21 days after the email was sent, but less than 21 days after the employee opened and read the email. The Full Bench of the Fair Work Commission confirmed that a dismissal does not take effect until it has been communicated to the employee and that in this case, the employee’s dismissal did not take effect until the employee had opened and read the email five days after it was sent.