Bullying and Harassment

Workplace Bullying and Harassment

Are you being bullied and harassed at work and feel helpless as to where to turn?
We are here to help you.

You used to love your job. Now you wake up each morning dreading going to work, feeling anxious about whether you will be confronted with more workplace bullying.

If you are experiencing workplace conflict or workplace bullying, chances are you do not know where to start in terms of understanding what your legal rights are and what you can do about it.

So many employees suffer in silence under the mistaken belief that they have no choice but to suck it up and grin and bear it. This is not true!

We will help you rediscover your confidence, learn how to stand up for yourself and take control of the issue so you can get back to enjoying work and life like you deserve.

Find out more about Workplace Bullying and Harassment

How can Rubix Legal help?

Get your game plan for overcoming workplace bullying and harassment…

From 1:1 coaching to the provision of full legal representation, Rubix Legal has a solution tailored just for you.

The information provided on this page is of a general nature only and is not to be relied upon as legal advice applicable to your specific circumstances. Specific legal advice is provided through our consultation sessions.

What is workplace bullying?

Workplace bullying occurs when a person (or a group) repeatedly behaves unreasonably towards a worker (or a group of workers) and the behaviour creates a risk to the worker’s health and safety.

Bullying behaviour can include a broad range of acts or inactions, but typically includes: aggressive or intimidating conduct; belittling or humiliating comments; the spreading of malicious rumours; teasing or practical jokes; exclusion and isolation in the workplace; unreasonable work expectations; and/or display of offensive material.

If you believe you are being bullied at work it is important to seek legal advice before lodging a complaint. This is because certain action, such as reasonable management action, will not constitute workplace bullying. For this reason, it is very important that you have the relevant behaviour assessed prior to making a complaint to ensure that you are eligible and have good prospects of success.

Who is eligible?

The Fair Work Commission bullying process can be accessed by employees, contractors or subcontractors, employees of contractors or subcontractors, employees of labour hire companies, outworkers, apprentices or trainees, students and volunteers. In other words, the process is not limited to the traditional employee.

Only workers who work in a constitutionally covered business are eligible to pursue a bullying complaint.

If you have been dismissed from your employment, you will not be eligible to pursue a bullying claim. Instead, you will need to consider your legal rights for unfair dismissal or general protection claims. 

Note: If you are not a national system employee you may be eligible to pursue a bullying complaint through the Queensland Human Rights Commission. If you a public service employee and require further information about your options, please get in contact with us.

What happens next?

Once an application for bullying has been lodged with the Fair Work Commission, the Commission will send a copy of the application to the employer (and any individual respondents named in the application) for response. The matter will then typically be listed for a mediation, but other steps could involve a conference or hearing. This is an opportunity for the employer and employee to resolve the bullying dispute.

Employees can be legally represented at conciliation conferences. If you require legal representation please get in touch.

If the dispute cannot be resolved at a mediation and proceeds to a hearing or conference, the Commission will make decide the matter. This involves consideration of whether bullying has occurred and whether there is a risk of further bullying conduct occurring unless a suitable order is made by the Commission.

Orders could include: requiring the individual (or group of individuals) to stop the bullying conduct; regular monitoring of behaviours by the employer (and any individuals directly involved); mandating that the employer comply with its bullying policy or review their bullying policy; mandating that the employer provide further information, support and training to staff.