Nicholas Linke


As head of the Workplace Law and Insurance Groups, Nicholas has had exposure to numerous diverse issues and disputes in each subject area. A highly regarded lawyer, Nicholas’ opinions and advice are greatly valued by his many satisfied clients.

Covering both contentious and non-contentious matters, Nicholas has successfully represented his clients in the Fair Work Commission, the Federal, Federal Circuit, Supreme, District and Magistrates Courts, as well as the South Australian Employment Tribunal, South Australian Equal Opportunity Commission and Australian Human Rights Commission.

Safety is another area of specialty for Nicholas, in which he draws on his intimate knowledge of the law to support his clients through workplace safety prosecutions and coronial inquiries.

Nicholas is currently the editor of Halsbury's Laws of Australia chapter on Industrial Law for South Australia.

Nicholas is a member of the Australian Labour Law Association, the Australian Labour and Employment Relations Association, the Law Society of South Australia, the Australian Insurance Law Association and the Australian Life Underwriters and Claims Association.

Nicholas currently serves on the Boards of:

  • Adelaide Fringe Inc
  • Restless Dance Theatre Inc
  • SA Living Artists Inc
  • The May Gibbs Children's Literature Trust
  • Adelaide Central School of Art Inc
  • University of Adelaide Law School Advisory Committee

Nicholas also manages the firm's pro bono program which includes providing advice to Catherine House Inc, the Cancer Council and JusticeNet SA. Nicholas is the Honorary Lawyer of the Adelaide Youth Orchestras Inc

Some of Nicholas' past and current matters include:

  • Acting for a multinational in general protections litigation in the Federal Circuit Court in Victoria
  • Numerous underpayment claims in the South Australian Employment Tribunal and former Industrial Relations Court including appeals through to Federal Court of Australia
  • Significant workplace investigations including fraud
  • Numerous unfair dismissal and general protections claims for several multinationals
  • Acting for major Australian financial institutions in enterprise bargaining negotiations
  • Acting for a major education institution in a $27m fraud investigation in which assets were frozen by court order and almost all funds recovered
  • Acting in several coronial inquiries
  • Acting for a multinational in challenging SafeWork improvement notices
  • Negotiating enforceable undertaking on behalf of various national entities to prevent workplace safety prosecutions
  • Managing large redundancy tranches on behalf of liquidators and ASX listed entity
  • Successfully defended $4M life insurance matter including appeals through to High Court special leave
  • Drafting technical employment contracts, IFAs and bespoke policies
  • Due diligence of target firms in M&A context
  • Acting for international hotel chain in litigated and enterprise bargaining matters
  • Defending Fair Work prosecutions
  • Acting in disability discrimination matters for major University including through to Federal Court appeals
  • Acting in numerous racial discrimination matters for universities in AHRC, Federal Court and SAET
  • Defending sexual harassment and discrimination claims in Federal and State jurisdictions
  • Acting for national and international life insurers in defending litigated TPD, life and other claims including fraudulent matters such as international faking of deaths
  • Acting in $3M infrastructure construction dispute for national engineering entity

The Law Society

  • Justice Award, 2013

Arts Law Centre of Australia

  • National Arts Community Pro Bono Award, 2013

Doyles Guide

  • Leading Employment Lawyers – SA, 2014 (Recommended)
  • Leading Employment Lawyers – Adelaide, 2015 (Recommended)
  • Leading Professional Indemnity Lawyers – SA, 2016 (Recommended)
  • Leading Workplace Health & Safety Lawyers – South Australia, 2016 (Recommended)
  • Leading Workplace Health & Safety Lawyers – Adelaide, 2016 (Recommended)
  • Leading Employment & Industrial Relations Lawyers – Adelaide, 2016 (Recommended)
  • Leading Employment & Industrial Relations Lawyers (Employer Representation) – SA, 2017 (Recommended)
  • Leading Employment Lawyers (Employer Representation) – SA, 2018 (Recommended)

Best Lawyers Awards

  • Recognised in Labour and Employment Law – Adelaide, 2019 and 2020
  • Recognised in Insurance Law – Adelaide, 2020
  • Recognised in Occupational Health & Safety Law – Adelaide, 2020