Salon operator faces court

8 September 2021

The Fair Work Ombudsman has commenced legal action in the Federal Circuit Court against the operator of a hairdressing salon in NSW.

Facing court is Tanya Louise Cooper-Green, a sole trader who operates a business under the name Jagged Edge Hair Design and a hairdressing salon at Port Macquarie trading as ‘T.L.C By the Sea’.

The regulator began an investigation after receiving a request for assistance from a worker who was employed full-time by Ms Cooper-Green as a hairdresser at the salon between January 2019 and January 2021.

A Fair Work Inspector issued a Compliance Notice to Ms Cooper-Green in March 2021 after forming a belief that the worker had not been paid what she was owed under the Hair and Beauty Industry Award 2010.

The inspector formed a belief that the worker was underpaid minimum wages, Saturday penalty rates and annual leave entitlements.

The FWO alleges Ms Cooper-Green, without reasonable excuse, failed to comply with the Compliance Notice which required her to calculate and back-pay the worker’s 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.

Ms Cooper-Green faces a maximum penalty of $6,660 for her alleged failure to comply with a Compliance Notice.

In addition to penalty, the regulator is seeking a court order for Ms Cooper-Green to take the action required by the Compliance Notice, which includes calculating and rectifying any underpayment in full, plus superannuation and interest.

A directions hearing has been listed in the Federal Circuit Court in Sydney on 26 November 2021.

Employers and employees can visit 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.

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Ryan Pedler, Assistant Director - Media
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