Media release

17 November 2006

Court & Penalties the Only Option

The Office of Workplace Services (OWS) is initiating legal action in the Victorian Magistrates Court against four Victorian employers.

The claims are against A1 Trolleys based in Bendigo, Glenridge Pty Ltd who operate an aquatic and swimming centre in Geelong, and Kevin Neil Kingsley, a cabinet making business in Sunshine and a company seeking deregistration, formerly known as Robert N Hendrey and Associates.

The OWS is initiating proceeding against all four employers in the Victorian Magistrates Court.

The OWS is seeking recovery of a total of $29, 620 on behalf of underpaid employees.

OWS Director, Mr Nicholas Wilson explained that companies who do no comply with OWS directions are subject to legal action and penalties.

“This action taken by the OWS will seek orders to compensate employees and to have penalties awarded by the courts against the employers,” said Mr Wilson.

“All four employers were provided with the opportunity to voluntarily rectify their underpayments of staff, but to date no payments have been made.

“Companies should be aware they are liable for a $33,000 fine for each individual breach of the Workplace Relations Act 1996 (the Act).

“With multiple breaches some companies are running the risk of having to pay huge fines.

“If companies are cheating their employees and we investigate we will catch them out and employers will be prosecuted.

“The central role of the OWS is to ensure that the rights and responsibilities of workers and employers under the act are protected, understood and enforced,” Mr Wilson said.

Employers and employees who would like more information on their rights and obligations should contact the Workplace Infoline on 1300 363 264.

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Page last updated: 17 Nov 2006