Paul O’Halloran

Position

Partner and Solicitor

Industry Focus

Education

FCB Workplace Law

Paul is a partner and solicitor with FCB Workplace Law and a Law Institute of Victoria Accredited Specialist in Workplace Relations. Based in our Melbourne office, he has over fifteen years’ experience in the legal sector. He works across a large number of industries for a diverse range of clients. In particular, his special expertise lies in advising clients operating in the education sector.

‘I began my career working as an associate to a judge in the Federal Circuit Court of Australia. From there, I accepted a role working in human resources in the chambers of the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Victoria. This experience sparked my interest in and passion for employment law, as well as giving me invaluable practical experience of how workplaces operate.’

At FCB Workplace Law, Paul specialises in:

  • Advising on the resolution of high risk matters frequently involving serious misconduct and reputational risk
  • Conducting complex and sensitive workplace investigations and inquiries into organisational misconduct or wrongdoing
  • Defending employment-related litigation
  • Developing, negotiating and implementing enterprise bargaining agreements
  • Preventing and resolving industrial and bargaining disputes
  • Assisting with discrimination and sexual harassment compliance
  • Defending and resolving unfair dismissal and adverse action claims
  • Developing workplace policies and codes of conduct
  • Drafting employment and independent contractor agreements
  • Managing cases of workplace misconduct and executive level departures
  • Advising on how to manage ill and injured workers
  • Advising on post-employment restraints.

‘I provide my clients with practical legal and strategic advice across a range of employment and industrial relations matters. My work covers all phases of the employment relationship from engagement, during employment, to termination and the post-employment period. I am dedicated to understanding the needs of my clients and I take a pragmatic approach to resolving their disputes.’

Paul has particular expertise in the education sector, where his work has included:

  • Undertaking complex and sensitive workplace investigations into workplace and institutional misconduct
  • Corporate governance compliance in schools
  • Devising dismissal and exit strategies
  • Drafting enterprise bargaining agreements
  • Drafting contracts and policies
  • Preparing intervention orders
  • Managing matters relating to reportable conduct such as sex-related offences in educational institutions and advising on child protection compliance
  • Advising in relation to unfair dismissal and general protection claims
  • Conducting training programs for clients.

Paul acts for a number of private colleges, a large child-care and after-school provider, a provider of Catholic education services, a higher education provider and an international chain of adult education colleges.

‘Recently, FCB Workplace Law acted for an education institution in a high-risk matter that posed substantial reputational risk. We provided carefully considered advice in relation to the dismissal of a senior employee against whom criminal allegations had been made. Although the matter was highly sensitive and litigious and received media attention, a pragmatic and swift strategy was deployed that ensured the individual exited the organisation within a short period of time. It was a good result for the client because there was no litigation, the matter was resolved within a week, and the legal spend was kept to a minimum. It is a great example of how the focus at FCB Workplace Law is on helping clients resolve legal problems in a pragmatic and cost efficient way.’

Qualifications:

  • Master of Laws (University of Melbourne)
  • Bachelor of Laws (Hons) (Macquarie University)
  • Advanced Diploma (Business) (RMIT University)
  • Accredited Specialist in Workplace Relations (Law Institute of Victoria)