Bloomberg lays out a cautionary tale to all small businesses in it’s story of a rather large fine against a fruit distributor that vu=iolated the law. Like in all sectors some guys just have to go for that little edge. In this case the wage differential they were ducking was three dollars an hour, or around fifteen per cent. Run that little hoax for a couple plus years and in this case it added up to $76,000. ignorance of he law never worked before and won’t work now, well at least if you are smalltime.
- A Gold Coast business was slapped a $76,000 worth of repayment bill to two workers who were subject to underpayments after the employer claimed ignorance of his obligations despite 25 years in business.
- As casuals under the Storage Service and Wholesale Award 2010, the workers were entitled to a base casual rate of up to $23.08 per hour, an early morning shift rate of up to $25.38 and up to $41.54 for overtime after the first two hours.
- Fair Work Ombudsman Ms Natalie James said the case was another reminder that ignorance of required pay rates is no defence for employers guilty of underpayments, regardless of the size of a business or what competitors may be paying.
“As part of the EU, the company back-paid the two workers with a combined lump sum of $34,000 in October. Weekly repayments of a combined $816.90 commenced on 1 October 2016 and will continue until 30 September 2017. The company must also commission external audits of its compliance with federal pay and conditions obligations this year and for the next two years. Under the terms of the EU, it will display a notice in the workplace detailing its contraventions and apologise to the two workers.”