​ሕግንና ደንብን በተመለከተ እርዳታ ማግኘት ይፈልጋሉን? - Amharic | هل تحتاج لمساعدة قانونية؟ - Arabic | ܤܢܝܼܩܵܐ ܝ݇ܘ̤ܬ ܠܗܲܝܵܪܬܵܐ ܩܵܢܘܿܢܵܝܬܵܐ؟ - Assyrian | Need Legal Help? - Auslan | Treba li vam pravna pomoc? - Bosnian | Burmese â Need Legal Help? | 需要法律帮助吗? - Chinese Simplified | 需要法律幫助嗎? - Chinese Traditional | Trebate li pravnu pomoć? - Croatian | ضرورت به کمک قانونی دارید؟ - Dari | Wïc Kuɔɔny në Wɛ̈t Löŋ? - Dinka | آیا به کمک حقوقی نیاز دارید؟ - Farsi | Gadreva na Veivuke Vakalawa? - Fijian | Kailangan ninyo ba ng tulong na panglegal? - Filipino | Besoin d’aide juridique ? - French | Χρειάζεστε βοήθεια σε νομικά ζητήματα - Greek | क्या आपको कानूनी सलाह चाहिए? - Hindi | Butuhkan Bantuan dalam Masalah Hukum? - Indonesian | Hai bisogno di assistenza legale? - Italian | ត្រូវការជំនួយលើបញ្ហាផ្លូវច្បាប់ឬទេ? - Khmer | 법적인 도움이 필요하십니까? - Korean | Ви треба ли помош со правни работи? - Macedonian | कानूनी सहयोग चाहिएको छ? - Nepalese | Necessita de ajuda com questões jurídicas? - Portuguese | Вам нужна юридическая помощь? - Russian | E Manaomia Fesoasoani i Mea Tau Tulafono? - Samoan | а ли вам треба помоћ у правним питањима? - Serbian | Ma u baahan tahay Caawimmad xagga sharciga ah?- Somali | ¿Necesita ayuda con cuestiones jurídicas? - Spanish | சட்ட உதவி தேவையா? - Tamil | ท่านต้องการความช่วยเหลือทางด้านกฎหมายไหม? - Thai | Fiema’u ha tokoni Fakalao? - Tongan | Yasal Danışmaya İhtiyacınız mı var? - Turkish | Cần Được Giúp Đỡ Về Luật Pháp? - Vietnamese |
LawAccess NSW > Representing Yourself > Employment rights > Wages and entitlements > Starting a court case > Going to the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia

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Going to the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia 

If you are owed wages or entitlements you can make a claim in the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia. The Court can hear your case and decide whether your employer owes you any unpaid wages or entitlements.

Alert icon  This section of the topic only deals with small claims applications to the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia. Small claims are any claim for unpaid wages or entitlements totalling $20,000 or less. You are not allowed to be represented by a lawyer without the court's permission if you use the small claims procedure.

If you want to claim more than $20,000, or you don't want to use the Court's small claims procedure, you may be able to use some of the information in this topic, but you should get legal advice


    Alert icon  Before going to court, it is a good idea to contact the Fair Work Ombudsman, which is a free service. The Fair Work Ombudsman can help try and resolve your issue and may also be able to help you make a small claim in court. 

    For more information, see Contacting the Fair Work Ombudsman.

    Making a small claims application to the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia 

    To apply to the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia, you must file:

    • an Application - Fair Work Division
    • a Form 5 - Small claim under the Fair Work Act 2009
    • supporting documentation.

    You will need to pay a filing fee when you file your application. However, you may be able to apply for a fee exemption or reduction if you receive a Centrelink benefit or are experiencing financial hardship.

    Alert icon  If you have made a complaint to the Fair Work Ombudsman (FWO) and your complaint was investigated, you should ask the FWO for a copy of their report. You can submit this to the Court with your application.

    For more information, see Step by step guide: Making a small claims application to the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia

    First court date

    The first court date is called a directions hearing. In some cases an application may be heard (decided) on the first day you go to court. In other cases, the Court may make 'directions' instead. These are orders about what should happen next in your case.

    For more in​formation, see Directions hearings.

    Mediation

    Mediation is an informal way of solving a problem. It is common for the Court to order parties to attend mediation. Mediation is a chance for you and your employer to talk about what you believe you are owed and why.

    For more information, see Mediation.

    Further directions hearings

    Your case may be listed for another directions hearing after mediation. If you and your employer came to an agreement at mediation, you can tell the Court at the further directions hearing. If you and your employer didn't settle the case, the Court will make some orders about the next steps in your case.

    For more information, see Directions hearings.

    The hearing 

    If you and your employer didn't settle the case at mediation, your case will be listed for a hearing. At a hearing, you can make submissions (present your argument) and give evidence about why you think you are owed wages and entitlements.

    For more information, see Hearing.

    The decision

    After the hearing has finished, the Judge will either decide that:

    • you have proved your case (your employer owes you some or all of the wages or entitlements you claimed)
    • you haven't proved your case (your employer does not owe you the wages or entitlements you claimed).

    If you have proved your case, you may be able to ask that a costs order be made against your employer. This is an order that your employer must pay your legal costs.

    If you haven’t proved your case, your employer may ask that a costs order be made against you.

    For more information, see The decision