On 1 Jan 2023, the Employment (Amendment) Act 2022 will effectively come into force. The amendments include, among others, widening the scope of employees protected under the Employment Act, an increase to the maternity leave period, flexible working arrangements, the introduction of a new section which mandates employers to clearly display a notice to raise awareness of sexual harassment and many more which will be covered in this session.
In addition, this session will also explore the key amendments to the Industrial Relations Act 1967 which came into force on 1 Jan 2021. The amendments include, among others, a provision which replaces the previous requirement for Ministerial reference and instead directs the Director General of the Industrial Relations Department to refer all unfair dismissal claims to the Industrial Court; as well as a change in the process of challenging an Industrial Court award, whereby the tradition route of Judicial Review has been replaced with an appeal process. It is imperative for practitioners to familiarise themselves with the new amendments to the Acts to ensure that they remain abreast of current legal developments.
Thavalingam C. Thavarajah was admitted as advocate and solicitor to the High Court of Malaya in 1990, prior to which, he was admitted as a Barrister-at-law at Gray’s Inn. He practiced in three of the largest legal firms in Malaysia, namely Shearn Delamore & Co., Zaid Ibrahim & Co. and Lee Hishammuddin Allen & Gledhill. He has authored, co-authored and contributed to numerous publications such as “Employment Termination Law & Practice Malaysia”; “A Practical Guide”; “Employment & Industrial Relations Law Malaysia”; “Retrenchment Law and Procedure in Malaysia”; “Constructive Dismissal — Commentaries and Cases”, “Employment Law Asia (Malaysian Chapter)”; as well as the volumes on the Employment Act 1955, Industrial Relations Act 1967 and the Trade Unions Act 1959 in the Annotated Statutes of Malaysia series.
Thavalingam C. Thavarajah has been consistently recognised and ranked as a leading practitioner by Benchmark Litigation, Euromoney, The Legal 500, Chambers and Asialaw. In 2010 and 2011, he was honoured by International Law Office (“ILO”) through the ILO Client Choice Awards in London, and by the In-House Community in 2017 during its awards ceremony in Hong Kong. He has also been involved in the restructuring of government-linked companies and acted as senior counsel in a number of high-profile employment disputes which have been reported in the media. He was also appointed by the Government of Malaysia as a member of the National Labour Advisory Council (“NLAC”) during his tenure as Malaysian Employers Federation (“MEF”) Honorary Secretary.
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