Melissa Small

Senior Associate

Qualifications: LLB (Hons), BA


Melissa is experienced in providing advice and representation to public sector and private sector clients in relation to all areas of employment law, including terms and conditions of employment, workplace investigations, misconduct and performance processes, termination of employment, litigation and dispute resolution, occupational health and safety, anti-discrimination and equal opportunity, privacy, governance, risk management and many others.

Melissa’s style is practical, proactive and approachable. She understands the importance of timeliness and how to provide succinct yet accurate advice tailored to the needs of her client. Melissa is also strategic and raises bigger picture issues as appropriate.

Having undertaken secondments to a government department, public hospital and statutory authority, Melissa has a strong understanding of the unique and complex challenges which arise in the public sector.

Prior to joining Hall & Wilcox, Melissa was a Senior Solicitor in the Workplace Relations and Occupational Safety Branch at the Victorian Government Solicitor’s Office.


Melissa has strong experience in providing advice and conducting litigation. Recent highlights include:

  • Successfully defending and settling unfair dismissal, general protections, breach of contract and discrimination claims.
  • Advising on compliance with the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth), enterprise agreements and awards.
  • Advising public sector clients in relation to the interpretation of, and interaction between, legislation and industrial instruments, including enterprise agreements, the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth), the Public Administration Act 2004 (Vic), financial management legislation and other public sector policies and regulations.
  • Assisting clients to comply with privacy obligations and respond to complaints under privacy legislation.
  • Assisting and providing tailored advice in relation to the recovery of overpayments.
  • Advising on the transfer of business rules under the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth).
  • Acting for insurers in Employment Practices Liability claims.
  • Drafting and advising on contracts of employment and workplace policies.
  • Advising on the application of the Pandemic Orders, management of sick/injured employees, employer obligations under health and safety legislation and drug and alcohol.