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https://www.minterellison.com/people/cassandra-collier
Cassandra Collier
Special Counsel and Co-Director, National Workplace Investigations Team
I work with Australia’s leading businesses and with the public sector to advise upon and undertake complex and sensitive workplace investigations. I also draw on many years of experience in workplace health and safety to ensure my clients manage the legal risks to their business, as well as to respond to workplace enforcement and regulatory matters. I also have extensive experience in public and administrative law, in particular in the justice, health and education sectors.
  • +61 3 8608 2356
  • +61 402 891 465

With my colleague Jennifer Veiga, I lead MinterEllison’s workplace investigations practice. I am a trusted advisor on investigations and bring to investigations an enviable skill set, with significant legal expertise in employment and criminal law. I carry out investigations with rigour, precision and efficiency. I have conducted countless confidential and impartial investigations involving complaints about bullying and harassment, sexually inappropriate behaviour, corrupt conduct, public interest disclosures, whistleblower matters, occupational health and safety and maladministration. I appreciate that investigations can be stressful for participants and strive to always show empathy and professionalism.

More broadly, in MinterEllison’s work health and safety practice, I work with clients to proactively manage risk during regulatory investigations and to defend criminal prosecutions arising from workplace incidents in all jurisdictions in Australia. I have also supported numerous duty holders in defending appeals against improvement notices issued by work health and safety regulators both in VCAT and in interstate tribunals. I provide prompt and practical advice on incident management and also work with clients to develop effective health and safety compliance strategies. This includes: policy reviews, culture reviews, advising boards about compliance obligations, developing comprehensive safety governance frameworks and advice regarding ancillary safety laws such as in relation to heavy vehicle regulation and rail safety. In 2019 I participated in the Victorian Government's stakeholder consultation on the introduction of industrial manslaughter laws.

I am also a leading advisor to the public sector, with a particular interest in matters referred to the Independent Broad-Based Anti-Corruption Commission. I also act for the Department of Justice and Community Safety in post-sentence supervision of serious offenders, for the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency in its regulation of health practitioners and for the Health Complaints Commissioner in her regulation of general health service providers. I regularly speak at industry events and to boards of both listed and not-for-profit providers. I have a background as a solicitor-advocate and have appeared in all courts and tribunals in Victoria.

Career highlights

  • I was seconded to the Department of Health and Human Services to assist with the Hotel Quarantine Inquiry
  • I acted for the Health Complaints Commissioner in successfully defending the first administrative law challenge to a decision under the Health Complaints Act 2016
  • I was solicitor with carriage of the City of Melbourne's investigation into allegations of inappropriate workplace behaviour involving the former Lord Mayor
  • I acted for the Department of Justice and Community Safety in successfully defending the first Court of Appeal challenge to conditions of a supervision order under the Serious Offenders Act 2018
  • I was solicitor assisting the Judicial Commission of Victoria in its first investigation of the conduct of a judicial officer
  • I am advising an Australian construction company in relation to workplace fatality investigation by a health and safety regulator
  • I advise the Veterinary Practitioners Registration Board in relation to investigations and the conduct of formal hearings
  • I have successfully negotiated numerous enforceable undertakings with WorkSafe Victoria in lieu of prosecutions
  • I have advised a government department in relation to sensitive workplace investigations of alleged leaking of information by departmental staff in the context of remote working during COVID-19 restrictions