IMAGINE the scene. My old trade union secretary mate is away on union business. He stays at a country hotel and after dinner and television feels the need for some recreation by expressing his manhood in a most complete manner. He rings up a lady who sells her services by the hour. Most unfortunately he injures his back during said recreation. What are my friend’s chances of successfully claiming workers compensation? Not as remote as you may think.
Fortunately, the majority of the High Court (4-2) would not grant his claim. The High Court knocked back a similar case recently, but it was a close-run thing and may well be revisited. The reasons are intriguing. The majority had to pull a rabbit from the hat to stop the case from succeeding. Indeed, the High Court had only six judges out of the usual seven decide the case because the seventh, Keane J., had decided the matter in the Full Federal Court in favour of the worker. Keane J. was recently appointed to the High Court and could not hear the matter. The decision is, in effect, 4-3.