Bosses warned keep books in order

A BAKER at Goondiwindi has been back-paid $10,500 after an investigation by the Fair Work Ombudsman.

A spokesman for the Fair Work Ombudsman said the employee lodged a complaint after he was underpaid his hourly rate, penalty rates and allowances.

The investigation also found the employer had failed to keep appropriate employment records.

After Queensland-based Fair Work inspectors contacted the company and explained its obligations, the worker was back-paid in full.

But the case serves as a reminder to all employers, particularly small and medium-sized firms, of their legal obligations and the need to keep records up to date.

Fair Work Ombudsman executive director Michael Campbell said that given the employer co-operated and voluntarily rectified the matter, there would be no further action against the company.

“We have a flexible, fair approach and our preference is always to work with employers to educate them and help them voluntarily rectify any non-compliance issues we identify,” he said.

Mr Campbell said that in most cases it dealt with, the Fair Work Ombudsman did not prosecute employers for inadvertent breaches of workplace laws.

“We acknowledge that inadvertent and accidental breaches of workplace laws do and will occur,” he said.

He said the Fair Work Ombudsman had tools on its website to assist both employees and employers to check minimum rates of pay.

“Small to medium-sized businesses without human resources staff can also ensure they are better equipped when hiring, man- aging and dismissing employees by using free template employment documentation available online,” Mr Campbell said.

Employers and employees seeking advice or assistance should contact the Fair Work Infoline on 131394, with translations available by calling 131450.

Throughout 2010, the Fair Work Ombudsman will visit up to 10,000 Queensland employers entering the workplace relations system for the first time.

For more details visit www.fairwork.gov.au.



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