Joellen Riley joined UTS:Law in 2019. Her academic career includes many years at Sydney Law School (where she served as Dean of Law from 2013 till 2018), and some time on the Faculty of Law at UNSW. She joined the academy after a decade as a financial journalist, and some years in private practice at a commercial law firm. She is admitted as a legal practitioner in NSW, and has consulted to boutique employment law firms.
- Fellow of the Australian Academy of Law (AAL)
- Member of the Australian Labour Law Association (ALLA)
- Afiliate of the Australian Institute of Employment Rights (AIER)
Can supervise: YES
Employment contract law
The intersection of labour law and areas of commercial law
Equity & Trusts
Anderson, G, Brodie, D & Riley, J 2017, The Common Law Employment Relationship A Comparative Study, Edward Elgar Publishing.
This book examines how the development of the common law under the influence of contemporary social and economic pressures has caused this contract to evolve.
Sappideen, C, O'Grady, PM, Riley, J & Smith, B 2016, Macken's Law of Employment, Lawbook Company.
For over 30 years, students, academics and professionals have relied on Macken's Law of Employment as Australia's most respected work in employment law. This 8th edition continues in that tradition.
Australian labour law, at least from the mid-twentieth century, was dominated by the employment paradigm: the assumption that labour laws scope was the regulation of employment relationships full-time and part-time, and continuing, fixed term or casual with a single (usually corporate) entity employer. But no sooner had the employment paradigm established and consolidated its shape, it began to fall apart. Since the 1980s there has been a significant growth of patterns of work that fall outside this paradigm, driven by organisational restructuring and management techniques such as labour hire, sub-contracting and franchising. Beyond Employment analyses the way in which Australian labour law is being reframed in this shift away from the pre-eminence of the employment paradigm. Its principal concern is with the legal construction and regulation of various forms of contracting, including labour hire arrangements, complex contractual chains and modern forms like franchising, and of casual employment. It outlines the current array of work relationships in Australia, and describes and analyses the way in which those outside continuous and fixed term employment are regulated. The book seeks to answer the central question: How does law (legal rules and principles) construct these work relationships, and how does it regulate these relationships?
Owens, R, Riley, J & Murray, J 2011, The Law of Work, Oxford University Press Australia.
Presents a principled approach to the subject matter and offers a reevaluation of the nature, scope and importance of employment and labour law. Owens, University of Adelaide; Riley, University of Sydney; Murray, La Trobe University.
Riley, J & Sheldon, P 2008, Remaking Australian Industrial Relations, CCH Australia Limited.
Summary: "Remaking Australian Industrial Relations is a collection of short reflective essays on the Australian IR system, framed around the question: ʻWhat should an IR system seek to achieve in contemporary Australia, and why?ʾ Edited ...
Owens, R, Owens, RJ & Riley, J 2007, The Law of Work, Oxford University Press, USA.
The major themes provide the basis for the analysis and critique of the most significant tribunal decisions, cases and legislative provisions. Author Owens from University of Adelaide, SA, author Riley from University of Sydney, NSW.
Riley, J 2007, Independent Work Contracts, Lawbook Company.
The Work Choices reforms and a new Independent Contractors Act 2006 (Cth) have changed the regulatory landscape for many workers.
Riley, J & Peterson, K 2006, Work choices: A Guide to the 2005 Changes, Thomson, Sydney.
Riley, J 2005, Employee Protection at Common Law.
Chapters include an explanation of the development in employment contract law of the duty of mutual trust and confidence, and its potential to resolve individual workplace disputes over such matters as performance-based pay and termination ...
Riley, J, McCarry, GJ & Smith, M 1997, Workplace relations a guide to the 1996 changes, Lbc Information Services.
a guide to the 1996 changes Joellen Riley, G. J. McCarry, Megan Smith. Preface
Commentators in the financial press have described the Workplace Relations
and Other Legislation Amendment Act 1996 as the most significant piece of ...
Munton, JR 2020, 'Rescuing 'reasonable notice' in indefinite employment contracts', Commercial Law Quarterly, vol. 34, no. 2, pp. 3-11.
A number of cases has doubted the continued necessity of the implied term of reasonable notice in indefinite employment contracts, given the enactment of a national standard for minimum notice in the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) s 117. This article explains the challenge to reasonable notice, and proposes an alternative doctrinal basis for preserving an entitlement to reasonable notice in those admittedly rare cases where an employee has been engaged indefinitely on a promise of long term job security.
Riley, J & Brodie, D 2019, 'A Duty of Good Management? Protected Interests and the Employment Contract', Victoria University of Wellington Law Review, vol. 50, no. 2, pp. 303-320.View/Download from: UTS OPUS
Brodie, D & Riley, J 2019, 'A Duty of Good Management? Protected Interests and the Employment Contract', Victoria University of Wellington Law Review, vol. 50, no. 2, pp. 303-320.View/Download from: Publisher's site
This essay in honour of Gordon Anderson's contribution to employment contract law reviews the extent to which it is true to say that the law of the employment contract does in fact protect the employee's interests in a well-managed workplace, where the harm suffered is financial or psychological/psychiatric. It will be suggested that the law has evolved less radically than Lord Slynn's dictum might suggest.
Riley, J & Sarina, T 2018, 'Recrafting the enterprise for the Gig Economy', New Zealand Journal of Employment Relations, vol. 43, no. 2, pp. 27-35.
Riley, J 2016, 'The Future of the Common Law in Employment Regulation', The International Journal of Comparative Labour Law and Industrial Relations, vol. 32, no. 1, pp. 33-44.
Riley, J, Carter, J, Courtney, W, Peden, E & Tolhurst, G 2015, 'Terms implied in law: 'Trust and confidence' in the High Court of Australia', Journal of Contract Law, vol. 32, no. 3, pp. 203-230.
Riley, J 2014, 'Mutual Trust and Confidence on Trial: At Last', Sydney Law Review, vol. 36, no. 1, pp. 151-167.
Riley, J, McCallum, R & Stewart, A 2013, 'Resolving Disputes over Employment rights in Australia', Comparative Labor Law and Policy Journal, vol. 34, pp. 843-879.
Munton, J 2012, 'SIBLINGS BUT NOT TWINS: MAKING SENSEOF 'MUTUAL TRUST' AND 'GOOD FAITH' INEMPLOYMENT CONTRACTS', Melbourne University Law Review, vol. 36:521.
Riley, J 2012, 'A Safe Touch Down for Qantas?', Australian Journal of Labour Law, vol. 25, no. 1, pp. 76-83.
Riley, J 2012, 'Bargaining Fair Work Style: Fault-lines in the Australian Model', New Zealand Journal of Employment Relations, vol. 37, no. 1, pp. 22-29.
Riley, J 2012, 'Sterilising Talent: A Critical Assessment of Injunctions Enforcing Negative Covenants', Sydney Law Review, vol. 34, no. 4, pp. 617-636.
Riley, J 2012, 'Teaching Labour Law in a Common Law Jurisdiction', International Journal of Comparative Labour Law and Industrial Relations, vol. 28, no. 1, pp. 71-79.
Riley, J & MacDermott, T 2012, 'ADR and Industrial Tribunals: Innovations and Challenges in Resolving Individual Workplace Grievances', Monash University Law Review, vol. 38, no. 2, pp. 82-102.
MacDermott, T & Riley, J 2011, 'Alternative Dispute Resolution and Individual Workplace Rights: The Evolving Role of Fair Work Australia', JOURNAL OF INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS, vol. 53, no. 5, pp. 718-732.View/Download from: Publisher's site
Riley, J 2011, 'Adverse Action Claims under the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth)', Commercial Law Quarterly, vol. 25, no. 3, pp. 12-16.
Riley, J 2011, 'Australie: Le recours au faux travail independant', Revue de droit compare du travail et de la securite sociale, vol. , pp. 95-96.
Riley, J 2010, 'Australie: L'egalite des sexes, enfin?', Revue de droit compare du ravail et de la securite social, vol. , pp. 234-237.
Riley, J 2010, 'La riposte del diritto del lavoro australiano all crisi finanziaria globale (trans: Australian Labour Law Responses to the Global Financial Crisis)', Lavoro e Diritto, vol. 24, no. 1, pp. 151-164.
Riley, J 2010, 'The Tolpuddle Martyrs: Injustice Within the Law By Herbert Vere Evatt (with a new introduction by Geoffrey Robertson)', Australian Journal of Human Rights, vol. 16, no. 1, pp. 223-225.View/Download from: Publisher's site
Riley, J 2009, 'The Boundaries of Mutual Trust and Confidence', Australian Journal of Labour Law, vol. 22, no. 1, pp. 73-86.
Riley, J 2009, 'Transfer of business under the Fair Work Act', Commercial Law Quarterly, vol. 23, no. 2, pp. 15-22.
Riley, J 2009, 'Workplace Dispute Resolution under the Fair Work Act: Is there a role for Private Alternative Dispute Resolution Providers?', Australasian Dispute Resolution Journal, vol. 20, no. 4, pp. 236-243.
Riley, J 2008, 'Innovation put on Ice? How overly jealous intellectual property protection discourages creativeity and productivity', Australian Intellectual Property Law Bulletin, vol. 20, no. 7, pp. 102-104.
Riley, J 2007, 'Election 2007: Industrial Relations Policy', Australian Review of Public Affairs, vol. September 2007, pp. 1-5.
Riley, J 2007, 'Employing Minors in New South Wales: The Industrial Relations (Child Employment) Act 2006 (NSW)', Australian Journal of Labour Law, vol. 20, no. 3, pp. 295-301.
From 1959 till 2006, all workers in New South Wales had recourse to review of contracts 'and arrangements' under which work is performed on the grounds of 'unfairness'. This jurisdiction - initially instigated to capture schemes and subterfuges by which employers escaped industrial awards by contracting out to dependent contractors - has been expanded over the years to allow review of all sorts of arrangements under which work is performed. This article will review that jurisdiction to demonstrate the potential of statutory unfair contracts review to meet some of the challenges that changes in labour market structures have presented for the protective agenda of labour law. © 2007 Oxford University Press.
Riley, J & Stewart, A 2007, 'Working Around Work Choices: Collective Bargaining and the Common Law', Melbourne University Law Review, vol. 31, no. 3, pp. 903-937.
Riley, J 2006, 'A Fair Deal for the Entrepreneurial Worker? Self-employment and Independent Contracting Post Work Choices', Australian Journal of Labour Law, vol. 19, no. 3, pp. 246-262.
Riley, J 2006, 'The Evolution of the Contract of Employment Post Work Choices', University of New South Wales Law Journal, vol. 29, no. 1, pp. 166-180.
The federal government's WorkChoices reforms - finally passed by both houses of Parliament in December 2005 - dominated legislative development in the industrial relations field in 2005. This report digests the main features of the extensive changes wrought by this legislation, including the 'hostile takeover' of the State systems, the establishment of a new wage-fixing body, changes to workplace bargaining, more draconian controls on industrial action, and the changes to unfair dismissal protection. A constitutional challenge to this legislation has been lodged by several State governments. The outcome of this challenge will not be known for some time. © 2006, Sage Publications. All rights reserved.
Riley, J 2005, 'Contracting for Work/Family Balance', Law in context (Bundoora, Vic.), vol. 23, no. 1, pp. 182-201.
Riley, J 2005, 'No 'poaching'? Why not? A reflection on the legitimacy of post employment restrictive covenants', Commercial Law Quarterly, vol. 19, no. 1, pp. 3-8.
Riley, J 2005, 'Pensioning off Lord Asquith's cook: Blackadder v Ramsay Butchering', Australian Journal of Labour Law, vol. 18, no. 2, pp. 177-177.
Riley, J 2005, 'Who Owns Human Capital? A Critical Appraisal of Legal Techniques for Capturing the Value of Work', Australian Journal of Labour Law, vol. 18, no. 1, pp. 1-25.
Riley, J & Peden, E 2005, 'Law Graduate Skills - A pilot study into employers' perspectives', Legal Education Review, vol. 15, no. 1, pp. 87-124.
The federal government finally secured passage of some of its workplace relations amendments in 2004—the transmission of business provisions for certified agreements, introduction of interim section 127 orders and some increased penalties for bad behaviour—and it dealt promptly with the Electrolux crisis created by the High Court in September. More amendments are clearly on the way. This report notes bills remaining on the agenda at the close of Parliamentary business in December. We also review the new Age Discrimination Act 2004 (Cwlth), and note some state developments. © 2005, Sage Publications. All rights reserved.
Riley, J 2004, 'A cautionary tale for employee advocates: Bredel v Moore Business Systems Ltd', Commercial Law Quarterly, vol. 18, no. 1, pp. 3-11.
Riley, J 2004, 'Book review: Harry Glasbeek, Wealth by Stealth', Sydney Law Review, vol. 26, pp. 456-458.
Riley, J 2004, 'Family friendly work practices and the law', Sydney Law Review, vol. 26, no. 3, pp. 395-426.
Despite the promise of cataclysmic change, 2003 saw very few, and very moderate reforms to industrial laws. The great debates—about a unitary industrial relations system, greater legal discipline for the building and construction industry, paid maternity leave, compulsory individual contracts in the higher education sector—left no lasting footprints in 2003. The most significant reform, achieved at the very end of the year, was the enactment of more safety net protection for Victorian workers. Otherwise, legislative change represented small incremental steps. This review notes the highlights from the year's debates, and explains the changes that were actually introduced. © 2004, Sage Publications. All rights reserved.
Legislation proposed and passed in 2002 continued to demonstrate the close alliance between law and politics in this field. While the Federal government pressed on with its Workplace Relations third wave (the Registration and Accountability of Organisations legislation being its only significant success), recently elected Labor governments moved in contrary directions. The Gallop Labor government's new Western Australian industrial laws feature in this report, and there is also a brief review of the Rann government's commissioned review of South Australia's industrial law. New South Wales introduced some protective measures for outworkers—and also restricted access to unfair contracts review to 'high flyers'. © 2003, Sage Publications. All rights reserved.
Riley, J 2003, 'Mutual trust and good faith: Can private contract law guarantee fair dealing in the workplace?', Australian Journal of Labour Law, vol. 16, no. 1, pp. 28-49.
Riley, J 2003, 'Protection for employment entitlements: a legal perspective', Australian Bulletin of Labour, vol. 29, no. 1, pp. 31-41.
Riley, J 2003, 'Who owns the customers? A reflection on recent cases on post-employment restraint clauses', Commercial Law Quarterly, vol. 17, no. 2, pp. 3-11.
The plight of employees who lose accrued entitlements when their corporate employers collapse is a matter of continuing political and industrial interest. After the National Textiles collapse in January 2000, the Howard government introduced the Employee Entitlements Support Scheme to provide a taxpayer-funded, minimum safety net to cushion employees from the worst effects of employer insolvency. Just prior to the 2001 federal election, a more generous General Employee Entitlement Redundancy Scheme was introduced. These are administrative solutions, susceptible to the fickle winds of political expediency. There have been many calls for longer term legislative solutions—through industry-wide or national insurance or guarantee-fund schemes. This article explores a further alternative: using existing long-standing commercial law principles and practices to bargain for security. If employee representatives were to examine the principles of corporate law, and adopt the practices of corporate financiers, they might bargain more effectively for better protection than may be offered long term by a welfare-based safety net. © 2002, Sage Publications. All rights reserved.
At the federal level, the year 2001 saw much legislative activity in the form of bills, debates, revisions and rejections--but very little progress for the government's 'third wave' industrial reform program. Apart from some changes to the unfair dismissals regime, much important legislation was left on the table when Parliament rose before the November federal election. Around the states, small but important changes to leave entitlements and other matters suggest some fine-tuning to ensure the most vulnerable workers are protected, but generally indicate stability in state industrial regimes. © 2002, Sage Publications. All rights reserved.
Riley, J 2002, 'Review: Mee, J "The Property Rights of cohabitees"', Australian Journal of Family Law, vol. 16, no. 3, pp. 259-266.
Riley, J 2002, 'Unfair contracts review: Unfair favouritism for high flyers? A review of the proposal to amend s 106 of the Industrial Relations Act 1996 (NSW)', Commercial Law Quarterly, vol. 16, no. 2, pp. 15-22.
A review of legislation passed and proposed in 2000 suggests a change in the direction of regulatory reform in Australia and New Zealand. A fresh concern with equity issues has tempered the push for efficiency-oriented reform. The Australian Federal Government's attempts to further restrict industry-wide industrial activity in favour of enterprise based bargaining and individual contracting have met resistance from a Senate concerned with the fairness of the proposed reforms. New legislation passed or proposed in other jurisdictions (notably New Zealand, Victoria and New South Wales) has focused on amendments to take care of the casualties of the 1990s reform agenda—dependent contractors, long term casuals, and the low-paid. Changes to the Corporations Law have been enacted to make company directors more responsible for protecting employees' accrued entitlements. © 2001, Sage Publications. All rights reserved.
Riley, J 2001, 'Trust law and commercial contracts', Commercial Law Quarterly, vol. Sept-Nov, pp. 23-27.
Munton, J 2000, 'Individual contracting and collective bargaining in the balance', Australian Journal of Labour Law, vol. 13, pp. 92-98.
Riley, J 2000, 'A challenge for commercial certainty: Retention of title trusts', Commercial Law Quarterly, vol. 14, pp. 13-18.
Munton, JR 2020, 'Judge-Made Law in the Common Law World: A Conservative Influence on the Transformation of Labour Law by Statute' in Gyulavari, T & Menegatti, E (eds), The Sources of Labour Law, Wolters Kluwer, The Netherlands, pp. 75-94.
The chapter is one of five explaining the 'horizontal issues' or thematic issues in a comparative study of the labour laws of 15 countries. This chapter explains the role of the common law (or judge-made) law in common law jurisdictions, and the influence it has had on the development of fundamental concepts in labour law. It also explains the principles of statutory interpretation that govern the complex relationship between judge-made and statutory law, in this statute-heavy field of law.
Riley, J 2018, 'General Protections: Industrial Activities and Collective Bargaiing' in McCrystal, S, Creighton, B & Forsyth, A (eds), Collective Bargaining Under the Fair Work Act, the Federation Press, Sydney, pp. 162-181.
Is the system of collective bargaining under the Fair Work Act broken? Both employers and unions think that it is, and that the legislation requires significant amendment.
Riley, J 2018, 'The Federal Court's Contribution to Australian Workplace Law' in Ridge, P & Stellios, J (eds), The Federal Court's Contribution to Australian Law: Past, Present and Future, pp. 289-307.
Riley, J 2017, 'Brand new 'sharing', or plain old 'sweating'? A proposal for regulating the new 'gig economy'' in Levy, R, O'Brien, M, Rice, S, Ridge, P & Thornton, M (eds), New Directions for Law in Australia: Essays in Contemporary Law Reform, ANU Press, Canberra, pp. 59-69.
Riley, J 2017, 'Regulating Work in the Gig Economy' in Ronnmar, M & Votinius, JJ (eds), Festskrift till Ann Numhauser-Henning, Juristforlaget i Lund, Sweden, pp. 669-684.
Riley, J 2017, 'The challenge of massive open online courses (MOOCs) to traditional legal education: The Australian experience' in Legal Education in the Global Context: Opportunities and Challenges, pp. 248-257.View/Download from: Publisher's site
Riley, J 2016, 'Developments in Contract of Employment Jurisprudence in Other Common-Law Jurisdictions: A Study of Australia' in Freedland, M (ed), The Contract of Employment, Oxford University Press, United Kingdom, pp. 273-294.
Part II provides an exposition and analysis of the doctrinal aspects of the contract of employment. The coverage of The Contract of Employment is unrivalled in its depth, detail and sophistication.
Riley, J 2016, 'Regulating the engagement of non-employed labour: A view from the Antipodes' in Brodie, D, Busby, N & Zahn, R (eds), The Future Regulation of Work: New concepts, New paradigms, Palgrave Macmillan, London.
Riley, J 2016, 'The Definition of the Contract of Employment and its Differentiation from Other Contracts and Other Work Relations' in Freedland, M (ed), The Contract of Employment, Oxford University Press, United Kingdom, pp. 321-340.
Part II provides an exposition and analysis of the doctrinal aspects of the contract of employment. The coverage of The Contract of Employment is unrivalled in its depth, detail and sophistication.
Riley, J & Weiler, D 2016, 'Modern Day Gladiators: The Professional Athlete Employment Relationship Under the World Anti-Doping Code' in Haas, U & Healey, D (eds), Doping in Sport and the Law, Hart Publishing Limited, Oregon, pp. 171-188.
These are thoughtful extended reflections by experts on theory and policy and how they interact with law in the context of doping in sport.
Riley, J & MacDermott, T 2015, 'Age discrimination and labour law in Australia: An ambivalent commitment to equality in the face of a demographic imperative' in Numhauser-Henning, A & Ronnmar, M (eds), Age Discrimination and Labour Law, Wolters Kluwer, The Netherlands, pp. 321-336.
Age Discrimination and Labour Law. Comparative and Conceptual Perspectives in the EU and Beyond, presents a detailed investigation of age discrimination from the dual perspectives of labour law and non-discrimination law.
Riley, J 2013, 'Regulatory responses to the blurring boundary between employment and self-employment: A view from the Antipodes' in Kiss, G (ed), Recent developments in labour law, Akademiai Kiado, Wolters Kluwer group, Budapest, pp. 131-149.
Riley, J 2012, 'A blurred boundary between entrepreneurship and servitude: Regulating business format franchising in Australia' in Fudge, J, McCrystal, S & Sankaran, K (eds), Challenging the Legal Boundaries of Work Regulation, Hart Pub Limited, pp. 101-119.
Focusing on paid work that blurs traditional legal boundaries and the challenge this poses to traditional forms of labor regulation, this collection of original case studies illustrates the wide range of different forms of regulation ...
Riley, J 2009, 'Commodifying Sheer Talent: Perverse Developments in the Law's Enforcement of Restrictive Covenants' in Arup, C & van Caenegem, W (eds), Intellectual Property Policy Reform Fostering Innovation and Development, Edward Elgar Pub, pp. 267-284.
The discussion takes in patents, copyright, trade secrets and relational obligations, considering the design of legislative directives, default principles, administrative practices, contractual terms and license specifications.Providing ...
Riley, J 2009, 'From Industrial Arbitration to Workplace Mediation: Changing Approaches to Dispute Resolution' in Forsyth, A & Stewart, A (eds), Fair Work The New Workplace Laws and the Work Choices Legacy, Federation Press, pp. 186-206.
This wide-ranging collection is an authoritative and accessible analysis of the profound changes to labour regulation under the Howard and Rudd Governments.
Riley, J & Sarina, T 2008, 'The New Conflict Managers: A Critical Assessment of Alternative Dispute Resolution Methods under Work Choices' in Michelson, G, Jamieson, S & Burgess, J (eds), New Employment Actors Developments from Australia, Peter Lang, Bern, pp. 223-234.
This volume contains a selection of papers which go back to a conference on new employment actors, held at the University of Sydney in November 2006.
Riley, J 2006, 'Regulating unequal work relationships for fairness and efficiency: A study of business format franchising' in Arup, C, Gahan, P, Howe, J, Johnstone, R, Mitchell, R & O'Donnell, A (eds), Labour Law and Labour Market Regulation Essays on the Construction, Constitution and Regulation of Labour Markets and Work Relationships, Federation Press, pp. 561-578.
Its 38 chapters reflect the dramatically different industrial, social, political and legislative contexts in which the law now operates and the intellectual revolution this is generating.
Riley, J New South Wales Government 2009, Public Holidays in NSW: REview of the Banks and Bank Holidays Act 1912, pp. 1-60, New South Wales.
Report of recommendations following a review of the Banks and Banks Holidays Act 1912 (NSW), with a view to enacting new public holidays legislation
Riley Munton, J 2019, 'Politics, Religion and Job Security'.
Paper presented at the Law Society of Tasmania Employment Law Conference
Riley, J, 'Employees or Contractors? Engaging Staff Following Work Choices, and in the Light of the Proposed Independent Contractors Legislation'.