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Patrick H.
Patrick H., Lawyer
Category: Australia Law
Satisfied Customers: 5376
Experience:  Dip Law LPAB - Sydney based lawyer
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My name is ***** ***** I'm asking a question on behalf of

Customer Question

Hi,
My name is ***** ***** I'm asking a question on behalf of my girlfriend.
My girlfriend just got fired. She had resigned from her position a few weeks ago. She was a contracted Speech Therapist. She only had one client booked in on this Friday morning and after that she was going to take the rest of the day off so that she can do some packing and move stuff into the new place in new town. Her boss, the one that she is contracted to, claims that she cant do that and she has to stay. Her boss constantly tells her that she has to be the receptionist, which isn't in her employment agreement.
There are two other contactors who work in this clinic and her boss also claimed that she had upset one of these contractor because she has resigned. My girlfriend has a good working relationship with the last contactor and her boss said the she speaks to this contractor to much and that she never has a conversation with her boss.
To me, this sound like the boss is bullying my girlfriend. The reason why I'm speaking to you and not my girlfriend is because she is very upset and she can't afford any legal advice. One of the reason why my girlfriend is upset is because she is worried that her boss is going to give a bad referral to her new employer and that her new employer will terminate her employment.
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Australia Law
Expert:  Patrick H. replied 10 months ago.
Hello and thank you for your question.You have described her as a contractor, but your description of her employment sounds more like that of an employee.If she is an employee, she will generally have to follow all reasonable directions of the employer, such as answering phones and will be paid for the work she is hired by the boss to do.If she is a contractor then it would be more typical for her to be paid an hourly rate or a share of the fees she charges her clients and she would normally only be required to do the work set out in her contract. Can you elaborate on how she is paid and for what work, and if she has a contract it would assist if you could send me a copy (you can attach scanned documents through this service.).
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
She is paid by commission. I have attached a copy of her agreement.
Can her employer dismiss her for those reasons?
Expert:  Patrick H. replied 10 months ago.
A shabby agreement.Will have a number of things to say about it either late tonight or tomorrow, but cannot respond just yet.In the meantime, can you give a little history as to your girlfriend's time with this company, how much she is paid generally, whether she finds the clients or is referred to existing clients and how much time does she generally spend doing 'unprofitable work' such as receptionist work?Also, how long has this company been operating and who is the owner?Patrick