Dempsey, Fiona

Senior Executive Lawyer

Employment and entitlements
Rawson, Craig

Senior Executive Lawyer

AGS helps agencies manage risk and develop protocols in all areas of Commonwealth work health and safety (WHS). Our unique visibility of the whole of government means we can advise clients on best practice on any WHS issue. Because we only work for government, we understand intuitively the WHS issues that are unique to the government legislative environment.

With our experience across all areas of government operations, including workers' compensation and public sector employment, we are uniquely placed to identify and advise on managing and responding to risk in the Commonwealth context.

We provide strategic and procedural WHS advice to almost all of the Commonwealth's 140 agencies. Our deep understanding of the Work Health and Safety Act 2011 (WHS Act) and the Work Health and Safety Regulations 2011 as they apply to the whole of government is unrivalled.

Critically, as we have acted for government in its capacity as both an employer and a regulator, our experience gives us a unique 360-degree perspective and enables our practitioners to bring a strategic understanding of the statutory framework to our clients' issues.

Our Work Health and Safety team can seamlessly draw upon the expertise of AGS practitioners in employment law, regulatory affairs, administrative law, statutory interpretation and constitutional issues. No other legal provider is better placed to understand the complex interactions between the WHS Act and other Commonwealth and State legislation.

AGS is in a unique position as our lawyers are Commonwealth employees and are able to appear in the Fair Work Commission on behalf of non-corporate Commonwealth entities without seeking permission, which enables efficient, timely and cost-effective client outcomes.

We are proactive at identifying issues for clients because we see these issues every day in different government contexts. Our solutions will always fit within your policy frameworks and legislative obligations.

Our advice to agencies on WHS issues includes:

  • advice on who is responsible for discharge of WHS obligations
  • advice on steps needed to discharge WHS and other duties of care in the wide range of workplace situations in which agencies operate in Australia and overseas
  • development of WHS plans and risk management plans
  • assisting agencies in dealing with WHS concerns and regulatory investigations
  • defending agencies in WHS proceedings.