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Misleading Employment Advertising

Ads may mislead you about the availability, nature and terms or conditions of employment. Misleading job and business opportunity ads are unlawful under the Australian Consumer Law.

Ads can be misleading because:

  • they simply don’t have enough information; or
  • they are written to purposely mislead you, because they want to hide from you what the job really is; or to make you think there’s a job when there isn’t.

Ads may mislead you about the availability, nature and terms or conditions of employment. Misleading job and business opportunity ads are unlawful under the Australian Consumer Law.

What you should do

Ads usually invite you to ring a number for more information. That is exactly what you should do – find out more information. For example, you should find out about:

  • the employment status (i.e. would you be a permanent/casual/fixed term employee? Will your hours be full time or part-time? Alternatively, will you be an independent contractor?
  • what type of work you would have to do (i.e. what would your duties be)?
  • if you would be covered by a modern award, enterprise agreement or a common law contract
  • how much, when, and how you would be paid
  • whether the gross pay includes or excludes superannuation
  • where the employer operates from, etc.

Things to watch out for

  1. Jobs that aren’t real jobs
  2. Misleading job descriptions
  3. Misleading income claims
  4. Training courses disguised as employment
  5. Contracting jobs disguised as employment
  6. “Commission only” jobs
  7. Ads you see all the time
  8. An instant interview

For further support

More detail can be found in the fact sheet which you should download.

Call our Telephone Information Service on Melbourne Metro (03) 9662 1933 or Regional Victoria, Queensland and Tasmania on 1800 331 617.

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