Whistleblowers play an important role in protecting the public from misconduct by both government and private companies. However, publicising confidential information can expose an individual to adverse consequences, including potential criminal prosecution.

Although there are laws to protect whistle blowers, the extent of the protection offered will depend a number of factors, including whether the relevant law to be applied is state or Commonwealth, the organisation involved and the nature of the information exposed. Generally, whistleblowers must have followed certain procedures or meet certain requirements in exposing the information in order to be covered by whistleblowing protection laws. From January 2020, it will also be compulsory for public companies and large proprietary companies to have a whistleblower policy.

It is important to seek legal advice if you are considering exposing information about misconduct. Segelov Taylor Lawyers principal, David Taylor is an accredited specialist in Employment and Industrial Law and can advise on the legal rights and obligations of employees and employers handling confidential information.