The Turnbull Government has introduced legislation to extend responsibility for deliberate and serious underpayments to franchisors and holding companies, in the wake of the problems exposed at 7-Eleven.
As a court fines a regional café more than $500,000 for exploiting overseas workers and the FWO pursues two other cafes for unlawful "cash-back" schemes, Ombudsman Natalie James has welcomed the Federal Government's commitment to introducing laws to prohibit such arrangements.
A tip-off from the Fair Work Ombudsman has led to the prosecution of a former company director for alleged breaches of the corporations law when he sought to deregister an entity that owed the Federal Government more than $50,000 in penalties for unpaid employee entitlements.
Fast food giant Pizza Hut has underpaid some of its delivery drivers, offering as little as $5.70 per delivery, with 92% of franchisees audited by the FWO failing to meet their legal obligations to employees, a report by the regulator has found.
The MUA may be forced to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars in compensation and penalties after the FWO commenced legal action against the union for allegedly organising unlawful, week-long industrial action at Sydney and Brisbane ports last year.
An internal investigations unit will replace 7-Eleven's wage repayment panel, while biometric thumb-printing, CCTV and facial recognition will complement a centralised payroll system, as part of a new compliance deed between the retailer and the FWO.
A court has fined a company and its director $124,000 over a sham contracting arrangement in which they underpaid a 417 visa-holder almost $8000 for four months work after misclassifying him as an independent contractor.
The Fair Work Ombudsman pursued accessories to alleged Fair Work Act breaches in nine out of every ten cases it lodged in court last financial year, while three-quarters involved visa-holders, according to its annual report.