The Importance of Compliance with National Employment Standards
Ensuring compliance with the National Employment Standards is a fundamental requirement for all employers. Failure to comply with these standards can lead to significant penalties not only for the company but also for its directors and managers.
The National Employment Standards cover various aspects of employment, including wages, casual loading, broken shift allowances, penalty rates, overtime entitlements, and timely termination pay and back pay entitlements. Proper compliance with these standards is critical to avoid legal disputes and penalties.
Recent Cases of Non-compliance
Several companies have faced penalties for non-compliance with National Employment Standards. A Sydney-based cleaning services company and its former manager were recently penalized a total of $124,186 for underpaying two casual workers who were visa holders and providing false payslips. The Fair Work Ombudsman successfully brought proceedings against the former manager, who was found to have knowingly or recklessly produced false or misleading documents to the Fair Work Inspector. See more information about this case here. https://www.fairwork.gov.au/newsroom/media-releases/2023-media-releases/april-2023/20230417-green-clean-penalty-media-release
Similarly, a Gold Coast construction company faced a $25,000 penalty for failing to comply with Compliance Notices issued by the Australian Building and Construction Commission regarding paying back-pay entitlements to two workers. See more information about this case here. https://www.fairwork.gov.au/newsroom/media-releases/2023-media-releases/april-2023/20230417-mac-worx-penalty-media-release
Another example of non-compliance involves a Sydney hairdressing salon that was recently ordered to pay penalties exceeding $291,000 for failure to pay a South Korean worker who was a subclass 457 skilled work visa holder. The company was found to be operating an unlawful cashback scheme, whereby the employee was required to cover leave entitlements and amounts associated with the visa, resulting in underpayment of minimum entitlements. The director was ordered to pay a penalty of $39,091.50, and both the company and director were ordered to pay the worker compensation plus interest to rectify the underpayments and cashback payments. See more information about this case here. https://www.fairwork.gov.au/newsroom/media-releases/2023-media-releases/april-2023/20230413-yeon-penalty-media-release
Employers must take proactive measures to avoid such penalties and maintain good relationships with their employees. If you require assistance to ensure you’re in compliance, contact our Employment Law Team today.
Contact our Employment Law team today to discuss your employment rights.
Ph: 5444 1022
Greenhalgh Pickard’s Employment and Litigation Team