Your work rights explained

Australia's workplace laws and regulations protect the rights of all workers, including international students working part-time on a student visa.

Your employer's legal responsibilities


In Australia, you must get a payslip within one working day of getting paid. Normally, workers get paid weekly, fortnightly (every two weeks) or monthly. The payslip is an important document - it is a record of how much you have earned and how much tax has been taken from your pay. 


As a temporary resident working in Australia, your employer must, by law, make superannuation contributions for you if you are eligible. When leaving Australia, you may be able to get back your superannuation payments (DASP) if you meet the requirements. 

Workers compensation

Australian law requires your employer to have insurance which protects you in case you are hurt or get sick at work. If this happens, the insurance (called workers compensation) may pay for your medical treatment or your wages until you can work again.

Your legal responsibilities

You also have responsibilities as an employee including:

  • applying for a tax file number and supplying it to your employer before starting your job
  • making sure you don’t work more than 48 hours in a fortnight during study terms and semesters if you are on a student visa, and
  • following any reasonable health and safety instructions from your employer.

Your work rights

Your right to the minimum wage 

The minimum wage is reviewed every year and is based on the type of work you do. You can find the current minimum wage on the Fair Work Ombudsmen website. If you are paid less than the minimum wage, you will not be in trouble if you inform the Fair Work Ombudsmen. 

Workplace safety 

Australia has work health and safety laws to protect the health, safety and welfare of all workers at work. Under the Work Health and Safety Act you have the right to a work environment that is safe and without risk to your health. Your workplace should have proper safety training and procedures in place. It should also have enough facilities such as bathrooms and dining areas. 


You have the right to be free from discrimination based on protected attributes such as race, sex, sexual orientation, age, physical, mental disability or religion. 

Bullying and harassment

You have the right to not be bullied or sexually harassed at work.

Bullying at work is when a person or group of people repeatedly behaves in a mean or unreasonable way towards another worker or group of workers. 

Sexual harassment at work happens when a worker or group of workers makes an unwelcome sexual advance or request for sexual favours. 

Find out more on these issues on the Fair Work Ombudsmen website

Unfair dismissal

Unfair dismissal is when an employee is dismissed (let go) from their job in a harsh, unjust or unreasonable way.

If you think you have been unfairly dismissed, you should file an application with the Fair Work Commission within 21 days of your dismissal.