Former automotive repair operator in court
8 September 2021
The Fair Work Ombudsman has commenced legal action against the former operator of a Melbourne-based automotive repair and service business.
Facing court is C & G Smith Enterprises Pty Ltd, which formerly operated a Rapid Tune franchise outlet in Keysborough, in Melbourne’s south-east.
The regulator began an investigation after receiving a request for assistance from a worker employed by C & G Smith Enterprises as a motor mechanic on a full-time basis between October 2019 and October 2020.
A Fair Work Inspector issued a Compliance Notice to C & G Smith Enterprises in April 2021 after forming a belief the worker had not been paid all entitlements owed under the National Employment Standards and the Vehicle Repair, Services and Retail Award 2020.
It is alleged the worker was underpaid the full-time minimum wage and was not paid his accrued but untaken annual leave on termination of his employment.
The FWO alleges C & G Smith Enterprises, without reasonable excuse, failed to comply with the Compliance Notice, which required the calculation and back-payment of the worker’s outstanding entitlements.
Fair Work Ombudsman Sandra Parker said the regulator would continue to enforce workplace laws in a proportionate manner during the COVID-19 pandemic and take business operators to court where lawful requests are not complied with.
“Where employers do not comply, we will take appropriate action to protect employees. A court can order a business to pay penalties in addition to back-paying workers.”
“Any employees with concerns about their pay or entitlements should contact the Fair Work Ombudsman for free assistance,” Ms Parker said.
The FWO is seeking penalties against C & G Smith Enterprises Pty Ltd. The company faces a maximum penalty of up to $33,300 for failing to comply with the Compliance Notice.
The regulator is also seeking an order for the company to comply with the Compliance Notice, which includes rectifying any underpayments in full, plus interest and superannuation.
A directions hearing is listed in the Federal Circuit and Family Court in Melbourne on 20 October 2021.
Employers and employees can visit www.fairwork.gov.au or call the Fair Work Infoline on 13 13 94 for free advice and assistance about their rights and obligations in the workplace. An interpreter service is available on 13 14 50. Small businesses can find targeted resources at the Small Business Showcase.
NOTE: Rapid Tune Keysborough now has new operators. The Fair Work Ombudsman makes no allegations against the current operators of the business.
Follow the Fair Work Ombudsman @fairwork_gov_au or find us on Facebook www.facebook.com/fairwork.gov.au .
Sign up to receive the Fair Work Ombudsman’s media releases direct to your email inbox at www.fairwork.gov.au/emailupdates.
Ryan Pedler, Assistant Director - Media
Mobile: 0411 430 902
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