Legal and Industrial Officer - Australian Council of Trade Unions

The ACTU seeks an experienced Legal and Industrial Officer to help it win its industrial relations and equalities priorities both at the Fair Work Commission and courts, and with the new Federal Government.

The role involves legal representation, legal and policy analysis and briefing for the ACTU leadership and a wide range of written and oral advocacy.

The Legal and Industrial Officer will work within a team of experienced union lawyers and economic and social policy staff as part of the ACTU’s Industrial and Policy Work Group.

Our Organisation

The Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU) is the peak union body representing over 1.8 million workers and their families.

The ACTU’s is the national voice for our movement: defending and advancing workers’ rights by co-ordinating union campaigns, representing workers at a range of government and non-government forums and providing industrial, policy and other support to our affiliates.

Key responsibilities

The Legal and Industrial Officer will be required to:

  • As part of a team conduct significant cases before the Fair Work Commission and the courts, including minimum and award wage adjustments, test cases and the review of modern awards;
  • Provide legal and industrial advice to the ACTU leadership and affiliates unions on industrial matters, including strategic litigation and other legal issues as required.
  • Research, develop and advocate for industrial and equalities issues, including through the preparation of submissions, briefs and speeches to inquiries, government, agencies and other relevant bodies.
  • Represent the ACTU in a variety of forums including consultative bodies and working parties;
  • Assist affiliates with strengthening their industrial and legal work through helping to develop educational materials and courses, and coordinating the sharing of best practice among union industrial officers and lawyers, and
  • Perform other responsibilities as required.

Essential criteria

  • Legal qualifications including a practising certificate and recent experience working as a lawyer or an Industrial Officer in a union, legal practice or equivalent organisation.
  • Comprehensive knowledge of contemporary industrial relations issues as well as industrial and related legislation (e.g. corporations, trade practices, superannuation, social security and taxation laws as they affect employment).
  • Knowledge of anti-discrimination law.
  • Experience in industrial advocacy and negotiation.
  • Ability to work with minimal supervision and to plan and prioritise work. 
  • Excellent research and oral and written communication skills.
  • Willingness to work in accordance with ACTU policy and procedures, and a commitment to the values of trade unionism, social justice and respect for cultural and social diversity.
  • Capacity to exercise judgment and discretion within a politically sensitive environment

Desirable Criteria

  • Legal experience running cases under anti-discrimination laws.
  • A strong understanding of the key barriers and opportunities to realising gender equality, especially as it relates to the world of work.
  • Working knowledge of economic and labour market concepts.


The ACTU will offer the successful candidate a salary in the range of $118,088 to $136,362 along with an 15% superannuation, annual leave loading, working from home opportunities and generous leave arrangements.

This role is based in Melbourne.

We encourage applications from people from diverse backgrounds.

To apply

Please provide a cover letter addressing your suitability for the role, as well as your CV to: Ben Moxham: Industrial & Policy Director at by Friday, 8 July 2022.


The ACTU is committed to providing a safe working environment. Therefore, it is a requirement that all employees be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 in order to undertake work outside of their ordinary place of residence (unless a medical exemption applies).

Apply online