BlandsLaw - Blog posts from Fair Work Ombudsman
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Fair Work Ombudsman audit finds 48% of employers non-compliant with workplace obligations

The Fair Work Ombudsman has released a report[1] detailing its findings to date in its running campaign testing employers’ compliance with basic obligations including minimum pay, record-keeping and pay slips[2].

Alarmingly, the FWO has found that 48% of the 1,217 businesses audited are non-compliant with their obligations. In the vast majority of cases, the reason provided by employers for non-compliance was a lack of awareness of their workplace obligations to their employees.

 

Other reasons included misinterpretation of award requirements, incorrect calculation of flat hourly rates and failing to apply the annual July wage increase. The least compliant industry was hospitality in which 61% of businesses audited were found to be non-compliant.

The majority of employers found to be in breach of their obligations were issued with contravention letters, with others receiving formal cautions, infringement notices and compliance notices. One employer entered into an Enforceable Undertaking and eight employers remain under investigation for serious non-compliance. So far, the FWO has recovered $1,326,125 for underpaid employees from almost

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Federal Circuit Court says company has case to answer for underpayment by subcontractor.

A company has failed to have a case summarily dismissed by claiming that it was not responsible for underpayment to workers by its subcontractor. The case was brought before the Federal Circuit Court by the Fair Work Ombudsman, and involves a South Australian company, Integrated Trolley Management (‘ITM’), one of many companies around Australia engaged to collect trolleys at various supermarkets. ITM subcontracts its services to Coastal Trolley Services (‘CTS’), who in turn subcontracts to South Jin Pty Ltd (‘South Jin’), the employer of the underpaid workers. The claim was made against South Jin as the employer and against CTS for accessorial liability.

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The Fair Work Ombudsman (FWO) has recently commended McDonald’s Australia for conducting a self- audit on its employees’ wages and other entitlements, leading to improved workplace relations for the 90,000-strong restaurant chain.

McDonald’s had agreed to participate in the self-audit following an unsuccessful attempt to have an enterprise agreement approved by Fair Work Australia. Although the enterprise agreement was approved on appeal, McDonald’s agreed to enter into a Deed to achieve two compliance activities:

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