Both vocational work experience placements and voluntary positions may be advertised. Vocational work experience placements may be paid or unpaid. The Legal Services Award 2010 asserts that employers must provide certain work conditions and rates of pay for law graduates. For more information, please go to the Fair Work Ombudsman Awards Index and search the Legal Services Award 2010. For unpaid positions the Fair Work Ombudsman summarises the position as:
“Unpaid work can include work trials, volunteer work, work experience and internships. It also includes a vocational placement as defined under the Fair Work Act 2009. Unpaid work is lawful if it is a genuine work experience, vocational placement or volunteering arrangement.
If the work is not a genuine vocational placement, work experience or volunteer arrangement, the person may be an employee under the Fair Work Act. Under the Fair Work Act, employees are entitled to minimum rates of pay and workplace conditions provided in the National Employment Standard and any applicable award or agreement.”
Employers are advised to consider whether a position offered as an unpaid work experience position is in fact a complying vocational work experience position. Please refer to information on the Fair Work Ombudsman website where you can also download a factsheet.
The College does not recommend or endorse any positions placed on the Jobs Noticeboard or accessed through ‘Find a Graduate’ search, nor does it check the position for compliance with the Fair Work Act or any state award legislation or the Work Experience Rules for the Graduate Diploma of Legal Practice. It is up to the student and the prospective employer to satisfy themselves in this regard.