A cleaning company that shamelessly exploited a vulnerable workforce made "inept attempts” to avoid the legal consequences when it claimed its employees were independent contractors, the Federal Court has found.
A labour hire employer "approved" by the federal government under the Seasonal Labour Program must engage an external auditor to check arrangements with 20% of its workforce after an FWO investigation discovered it underpaid visa recruits on a NSW farm.
A court has fined the operators of a restaurant chain almost $300,000 and ordered an independent audit of their IR practices after they used their own "independent market research" to justify underpayments.
Australian authorities are seeking assurances that the owners and operators of a coal carrier detained off the Queensland coast will pay the wages of about 20 crew and give them enough provisions for their journey to China.
In its annual review of the IR landscape, a major employment law firm concedes that while the Turnbull Government's workplace reform agenda may not be fully enacted in this parliamentary term, plans to crack down on worker exploitation have a good prospect of success.
The CFMEU has accused the FWBC of allowing a quest to "demonise" it get in the way of proper court processes following the watchdog's announcement that it has filed action against the union over alleged abuse of Gorgon LNG project workers.
The Fair Work Ombudsman has warned accessorial liability for workplace breaches is now being extended beyond employers and company directors to those working in human resources, management and recruitment.
A contractor "knowingly involved" in underpaying vulnerable supermarket trolley collectors and a subcontractor who "deliberately" produced false payment records and underpaid employees have been fined more than $90,000 by the Federal Court.
Law firm Maurice Blackburn is considering a test case exploring whether food delivery companies in Victoria such as Foodora and Deliveroo are engaging in sham contracting by engaging riders who claim they are being paid below award rates.