Western Australian Industrial Relations Commission

Full Bench dismiss appeal for lack of merit

The Full Bench has dismissed an appeal against the decision of the Industrial Magistrate on the basis that the appeal had no merit and the appellant, who was previously registered as a medical practitioner, had not challenged any findings of fact made by the Industrial Magistrate at first instance.

At first instance, the Industrial Magistrates Court (IMC) dismissed the appellant’s claim that the respondent, the North Metropolitan Health Service Board, failed to comply with cl 20(5) of the Department of Health Medical Practitioners (Metropolitan Health Services) AMA Industrial Agreement (Agreement) in relation to a contract completion payment. The Industrial Magistrate concluded that on a proper construction of cl 20(5) of the Agreement, to meet cl 20(5), a “medical practitioner” must be registered under the Health Practitioners Regulation National Law (WA) Act 2010 (Act).

As at the time of the cessation of the appellant’s fixed term contract, Scaddan IM found that the appellant was not so registered, ready, willing, and able to seek a new contract of employment with the respondent. Therefore, he did not qualify for a contract completion payment under cl 20(5) of the Agreement.

The appellant’s grounds of appeal were that the IMC made errors in law and facts in reaching the decision and that essential facts of the situation with respect to the appellant’s qualifications were ignored. The appellant maintained that the actions of the respondent were not fair, and the respondent had contravened its duty of good faith under s 42C of the Act.

The Full Bench noted that the appellant did not identify any alleged ‘errors in law and facts’ asserted in the Notice of Appeal and made no attempt to state how it was that the IMC made errors in the interpretation of the Agreement.

On this basis, the Full Bench was not persuaded that the appeal had any merit. It considered that Scaddan IM’s reasoning as to the interpretation of cl 20(5) of the Agreement to be entirely correct and she had made no error of principle.

The appeal was dismissed.

The decision can be read here. 

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