Workplace Investigations (LAWS6305)

UNIT OF STUDY

Lawyers and HR/IR practitioners are increasingly required to deal with complaints of sexual harassment, bullying and discrimination, and address suspected misconduct such as fraud/theft, violence, and safety and other breaches. In order to take disciplinary and other action, a proper factual foundation must be established, through a workplace investigation. This unit of study provides a framework for conducting effective and fair workplace investigations. It provides an overview of the legal risks that arise from poorly conducted investigations and draws relevant principles from current case law, including unfair dismissal decisions and breach of contract cases examining the implied duty of mutual trust and confidence. We consider how concepts of 'procedural fairness' and 'natural justice' impact each stage of a workplace investigation, including: Establishing the scope of the investigation and particularizing the alleged complaint or misconduct; Preparing an Investigation Plan; Conducting interviews and gathering information; Managing participants, including stand down/suspension; and Evaluating information and making findings, applying the relevant standard of proof.

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Further unit of study information

Classes

Intro Class: Mar 25 (6-8) then Apr 11, 12 & May 2, 3 (9-5)

Assessment

class participation including individual in-class exercises (25%) and group in-class exercises (25%) and 3000wd take-home exam (50%)

Faculty/department permission required?

Yes

Unit of study rules

Prerequisites and assumed knowledge

Assumed knowledge: LAWS6252 or a law degree and LAWS6071

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Cross-institutional study

If you are from another Australian tertiary institution you may be permitted to underake cross-institutional study in one or more units of study at the University of Sydney.

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