Fraser Island tourism operator back-pays worker $16,300

25 February 2010

A Fraser Island tourism industry worker has been reimbursed $16,300 after an investigation by the Fair Work Ombudsman found she was underpaid.

The worker, who was in a managerial position, lodged a complaint when she was made redundant but was not paid her full accrued annual leave entitlements, severance pay and pay in lieu of notice.

After Fair Work inspectors contacted the employer, the woman was promptly reimbursed without the need for further action against the company.

The recovery is among a number of cases finalised recently on behalf of workers on the Fraser Coast.

Inspectors discovered the underpayments through a combination of routine audits and investigations into complaints from workers.

They include:

  • $6100 for a Maryborough real estate industry worker underpaid commissions, and
  • $750 for a Hervey Bay retail worker underpaid the minimum hourly rate.

Fair Work Ombudsman Queensland Director Julie Wade says most underpayments result from a lack of understanding by employers of their legal obligations, including applicable Awards and pay-scales.

“That’s why the Fair Work Ombudsman places such a strong focus on educating employers and assisting them to understand and comply with workplace laws,” she said.

Ms Wade says in most cases, the Fair Work Ombudsman does not prosecute employers for inadvertent breaches of workplace laws.

She says employers or employees seeking up-to-date information on wage rates and conditions should visit or contact the Fair Work Infoline on 13 13 94. Translations are available by calling 13 14 50.

The Fair Work Ombudsman’s website also includes information and templates to help employers better manage employment records and payslips.

Media inquiries:

Craig Bildstien, Director Media & Stakeholder Relations,
0419 818 484

Ryan Pedler, Media & Stakeholder Relations Senior Adviser
(03) 9954 2561, 0434 365 924

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