HR and Management

  • 097BusinessOwnerSlappedWith$226kPenaltyA court has penalised a business owner more than $226,000 for their “sheer belligerence” in refusing to take responsibility for underpaying a former employee. The case is one of a number recently where the Fair Work Ombudsman (FWO) has pursued business owners seeking penalties for where they have underpaid workers.

  • 101Budget2018WhatsInItForYouIt’s May, which means it’s Budget time. In the last full Budget before the next Federal election, the Treasurer delivered an election Budget with enough sweeteners for everyone including businesses, income tax relief for individuals, measures to boost superannuation, and help for older Australians.

    The 2018-19 Budget was handed down on 8 May by Treasurer Scott Morrison. In the last full Budget before the next Federal election, ScoMo delivered what was widely perceived to be an election Budget with lots of sweeteners for everyone. So what’s in it for you?

  • 035BullyingClaimRejectedByFairWorkCommissionThe Fair Work Commission (FWC) has found a Bunnings Warehouse supervisor did not bully her subordinate despite an independent report concluding her references to his disability were “inappropriate and unreasonable”.

  • 128CrudeMessageSackIn a decision touching on out-of-hours conduct and social media use, the Fair Work Commission has upheld the sacking of a 47-year-old man who, while downing beers at the pub, sent a sexually crude Instagram message to a young female co-worker.

  • 090EmployeesBenefitFromNewInsolvencyDecisionDo you know if the company you work for is a corporate trustee of a trust or a company trading in its own right? Many employees wouldn’t have a clue and until recently, if you were an employee of a corporate trustee and it became insolvent, your claim for employee entitlements wouldn’t have any more weight than all the other unsecured creditors calling for their piece of the liquidated pie. A series of court cases, most recently a decision by the Federal Court, has now changed that in your favour.

  • 106PrisonSentenceForFWOUnderpaymentsA North Queensland tour operator has been sentenced to 12 months in prison for failing to back-pay five backpackers, in “unprecedented” contempt of court action brought by the Fair Work Ombudsman (FWO).

  • 049EmployerToPayWorker$139kForUnpaidLeaveOver21YearsAn employer has been ordered to pay more than $139,000 to a friend and former employee for 425 days’ unpaid annual leave and entitlements stretching back 21 years. Federal Circuit Court Judge Norah Hartnett found cabinet-maker Garo Balemian was not an independent contractor as employer, Mobilia Manufacturing Pty Ltd, claimed.

  • 093FBTWhatYouShouldBeAwareOfWith the FBT lodgement deadline fast approaching, we give you some tips on areas of FBT which may need particular attention, such as motor vehicles, employee contributions, the living-away-from-home allowance, car parking and the employer rebate. These are the areas that the ATO is focusing their efforts on in terms of compliance.

  • 057GigFirmsHaveTakenOldTimeExploitationAndSlappedAnAppOnItThe Transport Workers Union (TWU) is calling for food delivery companies to give their workers proper wages and entitlements, after the Federal Circuit Court (FCC) last week slammed the employers for sham contracting when underpaying a bicycle courier.

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  • 068PayrollReportingATouchySubjectIf you are an employer the way you report payments, such as salaries and wages, pay as you go (PAYG) withholding and superannuation is changing. The ATO will need you to report these payments directly from your payroll solution in real-time, at the same time as you pay your employees.

  • 072PregnantWorkerNotWarnedBeforeSackingA travel consultant, sacked without warning while pregnant, has been awarded more than $19,000 in compensation, in part because she was found to be “a victim of a general reluctance to hire pregnant people”.

    Green Travel Service dismissed Bernice Zhang, after three years of employment, on 14 September last year, citing a “constant lack of performance”.

  • 094ProtectingCustomerDataDid you know that in Australia, any organisation that handles personal information could be captured under the notifiable data breaches scheme which requires organisations to notify individuals whose personal information is involved in a data breach that is likely to result in serious harm.

  • 041SackedForBeingDeafAndOldA 62-year-old telemarketer, who was sacked by his manager because he claims he was told he “had a broken back, was deaf and… too old”, has been awarded $31,420 in compensation. The NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal (NCAT) found Acorn Stairlifts Pty Ltd had probably discriminated against Fenton McEvoy when his manager summarily dismissed him on 28 February 2014.

  • 135UnfairDismissalCompensationThe Fair Work Commission (FWC) has ordered Toyota Motor Corporation Australia (TMCA) to pay a foreperson with overarching supervisory responsibility for some 69 team members the maximum compensation under the Fair Work Act’s unfair dismissal provisions after it failed to prove allegations of inappropriate behavior.

  • 100UberNotAnEmployerEmployer groups have been dealt a blow after a Fair Work Commission finding that Uber was not an employer and thus unfair dismissal laws did not apply. With the rise of the gig economy, employment conditions such as minimum wages and conditions, entitlement to annual, sick and long service leave, superannuation, and protection from unfair dismissal and unlawful termination could all be threatened.

  • 089WorkerLawfullySackedThe industrial tribunal has upheld the sacking of an operations manager who secretly recorded his managers in a bid to prove his bullying claim but then refused to hand the audio file to his employer.

  • 081WorkerSackedForAbusiveSnapchatsAboutManagerThe Fair Work Commission has upheld the sacking of a long-term Coles employee who racially abused a co-worker and posted abusive and vulgar snapchats about his manager.

    Coles sacked Ridwan Ridwan by letter last August for a series of foul-mouthed and aggressive tirades in the workplace.

    Ridwan had worked at Coles for 21 years.

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