Melinda Bell

Special Counsel

Qualifications: BA, LL.B (Hons)


With over 14 years of experience, Melinda provides strategic and practical advice on a range of employment and industrial relations law issues.

She has extensive experience in the drafting and implementation of enterprise agreements, including advising on compliance with good faith bargaining obligations and the industrial action provisions of the Fair Work Act 2009. She is also experienced in negotiations on enterprise agreements and in resolving workplace industrial relations issues. Through a recent secondment to the Victorian public sector, Melinda is uniquely positioned to advise clients on the intersection of public sector industrial instruments, legislation and the Code of Conduct for Victorian Public Sector Employees.

Melinda advises clients on the employment law aspects of commercial transactions, corporate restructures, transfers of business and outsourcing arrangements. She also assists clients with the performance management of employees, employee discipline and the implementation of redundancies and workplace change.

Melinda is experienced in advising and handling unfair dismissal applications, general protections claims and disputes in the Fair Work Commission. She also conducts and manages workplace investigations, including under client legal privilege.


  • Drafting and advising on the implementation of enterprise agreements, including communication strategies, submissions and appearing before the Fair Work Commission for employers in the aged care, banking and finance, health, manufacturing, franchising (retail and fast food), building and construction and transport and logistics industries.
  • Conducting workplace investigations and reporting on findings of investigations into complaints and workplace issues for corporate employers and the public sector.
  • Advising on independent contractor arrangements, drafting independent contractor agreements and conducting workforce audits.
  • Advising on compliance with the Fair Work Act 2009, including the National Employment Standards, modern awards and franchisor liability provisions.
  • Managing ill and injured workers, including advising on the application of worker’s compensation legislation and discrimination legislation in various jurisdictions.
  • Recently seconded to a Victorian public sector agency, Melinda managed complex workplace grievances, investigated and resolved workplace behaviour and ethical issues (including bullying, discrimination, harassment and disciplinary matters), managed public complaints and advised on risk and legal issues arising out of workplace behaviour and ethical matters.

Latest thinking

Employment & Workplace Relations | 11 Sep 2020

Casual waitress on JobKeeper granted access to unfair dismissal claim 50 days after termination

The Fair Work Commission has allowed a casual waitress receiving JobKeeper payments to file an unfair dismissal application 50 days after her termination.