Melbourne residential care service allegedly underpaid employee more than $50,000

13 October 2011

The Fair Work Ombudsman has launched a prosecution against the operator of a residential care service in Melbourne for allegedly underpaying a personal care worker more than $50,000.

Facing court is Perfume Health Care Pty Ltd, which operates the Coorondo Home residential care service at Ashwood.

Also facing court is the company’s sole director and part-owner Peng Fei Lin, of Surrey Hills, who manages Coorondo Home.

The Fair Work Ombudsman alleges a personal care worker at Coorondo Home was underpaid a total of $51,706 between March, 2007 and February, 2011.

The part-time employee, a woman aged in her 40s, worked from 6.30pm to 9am two or three times a week.

Court documents allege the employee was initially paid $50 per shift, later increasing to $60 per shift – but should have been getting more than $140.

The woman was allegedly underpaid her minimum hourly rate of pay, penalty rates for weekend, public holiday and shift work, a sleepover allowance and leave entitlements.

Record-keeping and pay slips breaches are also being alleged.

Fair Work inspectors became aware of the alleged contraventions when the employee, who still works at Coorondo Home, lodged a complaint earlier this year.

Perfume Health Care back-paid the employee in June.

Fair Work Ombudsman Nicholas Wilson says a decision to prosecute was made because of the significant amount involved for a low-paid worker.

Mr Lin faces maximum penalties of up to $6600 per breach and his company a maximum penalty of $33,000 per breach.

The case is listed for a directions hearing in the Federal Magistrates Court in Melbourne on November 28.

Employers or employees seeking assistance should contact the Fair Work Infoline on 13 13 94 or visit www.fairwork.gov.au 

A free interpreter service is available on 13 14 50.

Media inquiries:

Cameron Jackson, Media Adviser, Media and Stakeholder Relations
0457 924 146
cameron.jackson@fwo.gov.au

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