$37,000 back-pay for workers in Melbourne’s East and South-East

1 May 2013

Workers in Melbourne’s East and South-East have been back-paid a total of $37,100 following recent intervention by the Fair Work Ombudsman.

The biggest recovery was $13,200 for a Caulfield cleaner underpaid wages, overtime rates and penalty rates between 2008 and 2010.

After Fair Work inspectors contacted the business and explained its obligations the employee was reimbursed all money owed without the need for further action against the employer.

Other recent recoveries include:

  • $7,800 for a Doncaster construction worker not paid redundancy entitlements upon termination in 2012,
  • $5,800 for a young apprentice tradesman at Pakenham underpaid wages in 2011-2012 and not paid wages in lieu of notice upon termination,
  • $5,300 for a young hair-and-beauty industry worker in the Ringwood area underpaid wages and penalty rates over a five-month period in 2011-2012 after being misclassified as a trainee, and
  • $5,000 for a Chinese national employed at a Springvale retail business underpaid wages in 2011-2012.

Acting Fair Work Ombudsman, Michael Campbell, said a lack of awareness among employers of the minimum entitlements that applied to their employees was a common cause of the underpayments.

Mr Campbell said when Fair Work inspectors identify a problem and contact a business, most employers check their records, realise a problem has occurred, and fix it immediately.

“These businesses have now corrected the errors that led to the underpayments and put processes in place to ensure they will not happen again,” Mr Campbell said.

The Fair Work Ombudsman’s website - www.fairwork.gov.au - contains a number of tools and resources, including PayCheck Plus and an Award Finder, to assist business-owners to determine the correct pay for their employees.

Fact sheets on the website explain the 10 National Employment Standards that apply to all workers, including entitlements such as annual leave, public holidays, notice of termination, and redundancy pay.

Employers and employees seeking information and advice should visit www.fairwork.gov.au or call the Fair Work Infoline on 13 13 94.

Follow the Fair Work Ombudsman on Twitter @fairwork_gov_au external-icon.png or find us on Facebook external-icon.png.

Media inquiries:

Penny Rowe, Media & Stakeholder Relations
0457 924 146

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