HCA: issue estoppel & actions by the FWO for entitlements

Tomlinson v Ramsey Food Processing Pty Ltd [2015] HCA 28
High Court of Australia
French CJ; Bell, Gageler, Keane & Nettle JJ
The appellant worker was employed by the respondent to work in their abattoir and claimed for an injury suffered whilst working at the abattoir. The respondent defended the claim on the basis it was not the appellant’s employer at the time of injury. There previously had been a shift in employment entities to a ‘labour hire’ company.  In a work related entitlements action by the Fair Work Ombudsman in the Federal Court a different employer was held responsible. The Court of Appeal of New South Wales found the respondent had benefit of issue estoppel from the Federal Court decision. Their decision was overturned because the Court of Appeal erred in concluding FWO was the appellant’s privy in Federal Court. I refer you to the judgment summary.

David Cormack – Brisbane Barrister & Mediator

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