Free Grievance Policy templates (Australia)

Make sure your HR department has the right tools for the job with a comprehensive grievance policy.

We’re reader-supported and may be paid when you visit links to partner sites. We don’t compare all products in the market, but we’re working on it!

Grievances. Complaints. Workplace disputes. Whatever you'd like to call them, every workplace experiences them at one point or another. What makes the key difference is how your business deals with them. Putting a grievance policy in place is the first step to implementing an effective grievances procedure.

Use this guide to learn how to create a grievance policy with the help of a legal template.

What is a Grievance Policy?

A grievance policy is essentially a document that outlines what happens when an employee raises a formal complaint in the workplace. Amongst other things, it identifies a clear step-by-step procedure for addressing, dealing with and solving a workplace grievance.

Picture not describedDownload this template at Lawpath

When should I use a Grievance Policy?

A grievance policy should be in place at all times while a business is operational and should be available for employees to access at any time. The policy comes into action when a member of staff raises a grievance or complaint in the workplace. At this point, the policy should be referred to and followed by the letter to maintain an objective approach to each issue that may arise.

Grievances include incidences such as bullying, harassment and discrimination as well as complaints relating to the work environment, workplace health and safety and an employee's terms and conditions of employment.

Grievance Policy vs Complaint Handling Policy

Unlike a grievance policy that applies to internal complaints between employees, a complaint handling policy deals with external complaints from a customer or client.

A complaint handling policy will outline the steps that a business makes to deal with a customer complaint in a constructive and positive manner, as to inflict as little damage on the reputation of the business as possible. This is a common policy found in most service-based industries.

What does a Grievance Policy include?

A Grievance Policy typically includes the following:

  • The Policy's purpose and scope. Your policy should start with a short and clear statement highlighting what it is for and how it can be used to the benefit of employees. It should also make clear who the policy refers to. In most cases, this is everyone in the company.
  • Key definitions. It's important to include a definition of what a 'grievance' is and how this relates to the policy. This makes it explicitly clear when this grievance policy comes into action.
  • Process and procedures. Perhaps the most important aspect of a grievance policy in the workplace is how you deal with the complaints. Your policy should clearly outline the step-by-step process that will be carried out with each case that arises. It should include who to address the grievance to initially, and how it will be handled thereafter. Finally, your policy should set out the type of conflict resolutions that may occur.
  • Confidentiality. To protect your employees, it's important to ensure a degree of confidentiality when an employee raises a grievance. Total confidentiality is often impossible as you may need to investigate the matter with other members of staff.

How effective is a Grievance Policy?

Disputes in the workplace don't occur every day, but having a grievance policy in place is an effective way of dealing with them when they do. By establishing how your company will deal with a workplace complaint, you can ensure that a grievance is handled appropriately and fairly every single time.

As well as ensuring staff grievances are taken seriously and dealt with fairly, a well-written and implemented policy will ensure that the complaint is handled as quickly as possible, with as little interruption to the workplace as possible. If dealt with correctly, a grievance policy will prevent an employee from taking further legal action.

Do I need to engage a lawyer?

A grievance policy is an integral piece of documentation for your HR department. When used correctly, it will keep employees feeling valued and can protect your business from legal action. That's why it's important to make sure your policy is a complete document, with all of the relevant clauses and no loopholes. Ultimately, the best person to ensure this is the case is going to be a legal professional.

Name Product Legal document services available Free legal documents available? Other legal services offered Price Document library size
Lawpath
Customisable document templates
You can view samples for free and you can create your first document for free.
Online document eSignatures, lawyer marketplace, on-demand legal advice, business setup services
$288 per year for unlimited documents
300+
Customise and download up to 300 legal documents for business or personal matters. Plus register a company, business name or ABN.
LawDepot
Customisable document templates
Free one week trial available which gives access to hundreds of documents.
Free legal articles and resources
$59.88 per year for unlimited documents or one-off documents available for $9.50 - $49
150+
Customise and download legal documents in as little as five minutes. Plus, LawDepot offers peace of mind with two service guarantees.
Legal123
Customisable document templates
No
Custom legal services available, free law change updates via email, legal packages for various professions
Individual templates start from $59 + GST
Legal123 offers a range of individual templates or document packages for consultants, app developers, personal trainers and more.
LegalVision
Customisable document templates & professionally drafted documents
No
Legal advice phone consultations, contract reviewing and amendments, trade mark applications, business structure assistance.
From $49 + GST per week for access to 40+ legal templates
40+
Take advantage of unlimited legal advice consultations, free legal templates and fast turnaround times for legal projects with LegalVision membership.
Law Central
Customisable document templates
You can view samples and create your own document for free with the Silver membership.
Legal advice specialised on commercial and estate planning
Between $18 - $625 per document.
~100
Law Central offers a large number of legal templates for super, trusts, estate planning, employment and commercial uses.
loading

Compare up to 4 providers

How do I write a Grievance Policy?

Utilising a grievance policy sample or template is a great way to start writing your document. Start by using the key factors outlined above as a general structure for your policy and filling the sections out with information specific to your business and its industry. These policies often deal with sensitive subjects so it is important to keep this in mind while writing it and to use clear and appropriate language throughout.

Writing up a policy for the workplace is an important task, that can seem daunting. Luckily, there are plenty of grievance policy samples and templates out there, as well as legal professionals willing to give you advice.

  • Lawpath. You'll need to sign up to Lawpath's subscription service to access their documents, but your first document will come free of charge.
  • LegalVision. Home to more than 5,000 legal documents, you'll be able to find what you need on Legal Vision. You can pay a one-time fee to access the templates or sign up for a monthly subscription.
  • Law Depot. A simple, but effective platform with a good selection of free legal templates.

More guides on Finder

Ask an Expert

You are about to post a question on finder.com.au:

  • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
  • finder.com.au is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
  • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
  • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

Finder only provides general advice and factual information, so consider your own circumstances, or seek advice before you decide to act on our content. By submitting a question, you're accepting our Terms of Use, Disclaimer & Privacy Policy and Privacy & Cookies Policy.
Go to site