Employment and workers' rights

All workers in Australia are entitled to rights and protections at work. Employers must comply with Australian workplace law, including their obligation to pay you the correct salary for all time worked and to provide a safe workplace. Enforcement of workplace laws is undertaken by the Fair Work Ombudsman. As an employee, you can also seek assistance from your respective union if you are a member. 

A short summary of basic entitlements and obligations that employees have incude: 

  • Employees are entitled to a minimum wage, which varies by industry and occupation. Minimum wage refers to the amount paid to an employee before tax is taken out. 
  • It is a legal requirement for employees to be provided payslips, which must summarise hours worked, pay received, and tax subtracted from each payment.  
  • International students must hold a valid work visa and may be subject to a lowered maximum number of hours available to work per week.


  • The Fair Work Ombudsman's Pay and Conditions Tool can help you check your minimum wage, entitlements, and conditions. Also see the website's Minimum wages page. 
  • Do your employer's payslips meet legal requirements? Find out more here
  • If you are an international student, see the Fair Work Ombudsman's International students page and their international students factsheet for more information on matters relating to international student employment.
  • See the Australian Government Moneysmart page on getting a job, including for information on employment types, taxes, wages, rights, and more. 

Getting help and advice

If you encounter workplace related issues and are unable to resolve them with your employer, there are a number of organisations that can provide you with advice and assistance.

  • See the Fair Work Ombudsman's step-by-step for resolving workplace issues and reporting issues. 
  • ANUSA offers a free legal service through a practising lawyer for all students.  
  • Legal Aid ACT offers free and confidential legal advice, assistance, referrals, and information. Contact their helpline on 1300 654 314 or see their webpage here
  • ANU Thrive can help talk through the options available to you and provide resources and information. 


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