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Are your work rights at risk?

Are Your Work Rights at Risk?

As an international student in Australia, you have specific rights in the workplace that must be protected. Here are important red flags to watch out for and steps to take if they occur.


Red Flags in the Workplace

  • Compensation with Meals and Lodging: It's illegal for employers to substitute meals or lodging for monetary wages. Free meals should be in addition to your regular pay.

  • Requested to Return Part of Your Wages: Employers asking for a portion of your wages back, known as a "cashback scheme," is prohibited.

  • Deductions from Your Salary: Employers cannot deduct money for breakages, theft, or register shortages. Any deductions must be agreed upon in writing and beneficial to you.

  • Not Receiving Pay Stubs: Ensure you receive a payslip within one working day of payment to track your hours and earnings.

  • Requirement for an ABN: Generally, you need a Tax File Number (TFN) rather than an Australian Business Number (ABN), unless you're self-employed.


Actions to Take

Speak Up: If you encounter these issues, discuss them with your employer or seek assistance from the Fair Work Ombudsman, offering free support in multiple languages. 



Download 'Are your work rights safe - warning signs' materials in various sizes and languages from the Fair Work Ombudsman's resource portal, including posters and case study videos.

State and Territory Workplace Assistance

Discussion Starters

Initiating conversations about workplace rights with your employer can be challenging. Use the available brief animation, poster, and brochure to prepare for these discussions.

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