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Rachel Drew

LLB (Hons), BA

Partner - Brisbane

Areas of Expertise

Workplace Relations & Safety, Immigration Law


Rachel is a highly experienced workplace lawyer specialising in employment & industrial relations issues, including industrial bargaining, workplace disputes, Federal Circuit Court & Fair Work Commission litigation, employee misconduct investigations, professional misconduct defence, business sponsorship and migration, defamation disputes, work health and safety, contract disputes, discrimination, managing discipline and dismissal, and transmission of business. 

Extensive industry experience in government, education, medical & allied health and construction & resources sectors. 

Certified professional member of the Australian Human Resources Institute.


  • workplace law
  • workplace misconduct and employee conduct investigations
  • Federal Circuit Court & Fair Work Commission disputes
  • business migration
  • industrial relations
  • public sector employment
  • work health and safety investigations.

Rachel has been listed in the 2014 to 2022 edition of The Best Lawyers in Australia for Labour and Employment Law. She is also recognised in the 2020 and 2021 editions of Doyles Guide as a recommended  lawyer in Employment (Employer Representation) and leading Immigration lawyer for Queensland. She has also been included in the Asia Pacific Legal 500 Publication for Corporate/M&A.


Rachel’s key experience includes the following:

Employment and Industrial Relations

Preventing and resolving disputes, and representation of clients, in a range of State and Federal courts and industrial commission and tribunals, on matters including:

•  public sector employment issues

•  contractual claims

•  interpretation of industrial instruments

•  professional misconduct and dismissal issues 

•  discrimination and harassment complaints.

Workers’ compensation

  • managing more than 100 WorkCover claims each year, representing both workers and employers in the Industrial Magistrates Court and the Queensland Industrial Relations Commission at the review and appeal level
  • advising employers on WorkCover claims including obtaining factual evidence, advising on the correct level of compensation payable and rehabilitation obligations
  • acting for the Queensland Teachers Union and the Queensland Independent Education Union, representing many members in workers’ compensation claims and before the Medical Assessment Tribunals of WorkCover Queensland.

Work health and safety

  • prosecuting on behalf of Queensland Government Departments for work health & safety breaches, including all witness preparation, interlocutory applications and trial management 
  • representing employers and various levels of management in response to work health and safety incidents, including attending investigation interviews, responding to Infringement Notices and representation in court prosecutions.

Equal employment and opportunity

  • representing clients in the Anti-Discrimination Commission Queensland, QCAT and the Australian Human Rights Commission.

Professional Bodies Registration Compliance and Disciplinary Issues

  •  advising professionals in relation to issues arising out of insurance coverage, professional registration and allegations of misconduct.


01 December 2020 - Knowledge

Understanding the public service disciplinary framework

#Workplace Relations & Safety, #Government

We discuss the strict disciplinary and performance management procedures that public service employers must follow as a result of recent amendments to Queensland’s public service law.

16 November 2020 - Knowledge

‘Elimination’ of casual employee found to be harsh, unjust and unreasonable

#Workplace Relations & Safety

Casual employee dismissed at the initiative of the employer without a valid reason found to be harsh, unjust and unreasonable.

22 September 2020 - Knowledge

Are employers liable for employees’ psychiatric injuries sustained as a result of proper performance management?

#Workplace Relations & Safety

We look at a case where an employer did not owe their employee a duty of care to prevent psychiatric injury because they took reasonable steps to manage her performance.

15 September 2020 - Knowledge

Queensland criminalises wage theft

#Workplace Relations & Safety

Queensland employers who deliberately underpay workers could be jailed for up to 10 years or face unlimited fines under new Queensland laws, which passed with bi-partisan support.

09 September 2020 - Knowledge

Inside track: Local Government

#Local Government, #Workplace Relations & Safety

We deep dive into Queensland’s Human Rights Act and look at how local councils can incorporate the legislation into their existing policies and procedures.

08 September 2020 - Knowledge

Lesson for employers: Restraints, injunctions and gardening leave

#Workplace Relations & Safety

The Supreme Court of Queensland has refused to grant an injunction to an employer attempting to restrain its executive from a competitor, days before the end of his gardening leave.

07 July 2020 - Knowledge

Slippery business: A slip during a work trip not compensable, says Federal Court

#Workplace Relations & Safety

A ruling from the Federal Court confirms an employee’s night out socialising during a work trip broke the connection with her employment, rendering her ineligible for workers’ compensation for an injury at 2:30am.

22 April 2020 - Knowledge

Employees beware – former employee’s social media posts prevent own claim succeeding

#Workplace Relations & Safety

A recent decision by the Fair Work Commission has highlighted one of social media’s many pitfalls by allowing an employer to rely on a former employee’s posts to defeat a general protections application.

21 April 2020 - Knowledge

Employer protected from security officer’s accidental resignation when attempting conversion to casual employment

#Workplace Relations & Safety

Casino Canberra successfully escaped an unfair dismissal claim of a permanent security officer who unintentionally resigned when seeking to become a casual employee

25 March 2020 - Knowledge

Inside track: Local Government

#Local Government

As the threat of COVID-19 continues to escalate, local governments across Australia have taken swift action to combat the virus, including recent legislative changes to elections and planning laws. In this article we examine some of those measures and other implications for Councils.

16 September 2019 - Knowledge

Care to share? Medicare’s new Shared Debt Recovery Scheme

#Workplace Relations & Safety

Medical practices beware! Medicare’s new Shared Debt Recovery Scheme requires secondary debtors to share in debts identified as a result of Medicare audits.

Upcoming Seminars