Lack of co-operation results in legal action

16 February 2015

A Sydney business will face court for failing to co-operate with the Fair Work Ombudsman after it received a complaint from an employee.

The Agency has commenced legal proceedings against Henry Andrew Nickolls and his company Kleen Group Pty Ltd, which provides cleaning, building and facilities management and integrated property services.

The Fair Work Ombudsman sought to engage with Mr Nickolls and Kleen Group after an operations manager complained about being underpaid.

When efforts to secure co-operation failed, the Fair Work Ombudsman issued a Notice to Produce (NTP) relevant employment documents within 18 days.

The company allegedly did not comply and failed to respond to further follow-up correspondence.

Under the Fair Work Act, business operators must comply with Notices to Produce issued by Fair Work inspectors or make a court application for a review if they are seeking to challenge a Notice.

“Our inspectors made repeated efforts to engage with this business operator to try to obtain the documents required for our investigation, but were not able to secure sufficient co-operation,” Fair Work Ombudsman Natalie James says.

Mr Nickolls faces a penalty of up to $10,200 and his company faces a penalty of up to $51,000.

In addition, the Fair Work Ombudsman is seeking a Court Order for the company to comply with the Notice to Produce so its investigation can continue.

Ms James says the proceedings are necessary because enforcing compliance with Notices to Produce is fundamental for maintaining the integrity of Australia’s workplace laws and enabling inspectors to conduct thorough investigations.

The matter will be heard in the Federal Circuit Court in Sydney.

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

A free interpreter service is available by calling 13 14 50.

The Fair Work Ombudsman supports compliant, productive and inclusive Australian workplaces.

Follow Fair Work Ombudsman Natalie James on Twitter @NatJamesFWO external-icon.png, the Fair Work Ombudsman @fairwork_gov_au External link icon or find us on Facebook www.facebook.com/fairwork.gov.au External link icon.

Media inquiries:

Ryan Pedler, Assistant Media Director
Mobile: 0411 430 902
ryan.pedler@fwo.gov.au

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