Australia: accommodation is not a ‘payment’ — the Mammoet case

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We have now had slightly more than a week to consider the effect of the Mammoet case (CFMEU v Mammoet [2013] HCA 36).

In the Mammoet case, the High Court unanimously allowed an appeal from a decision of the Federal Court of Australia, which held that the provision of accommodation to employees during a period of ‘protected industrial action’ would have constituted a ‘payment’ by their employer that was prohibited by s470(1) of the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth).

Section 470(1) provides that if an employee engages in ’protected industrial action… the employer must not make a payment to an employee in relation to the total duration of the industrial action on that day’…

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