Salon operator cut down to size over underpayments

The operator of a hair salon in the Central Coast region of New South Wales is set to face the Federal Circuit Court over the alleged underpayment of a first-year hairdressing apprentice.

According to the Fair Work Ombudsman, My Salon Erina Pty Ltd, and its manager, Nelvin Nitesh Lal, were complicit in the underpayment of the young worker between October 2019 and May 2020. The employee was aged 17 at the she was hired and this was her first job.

A Fair Work Inspector determined that the employee was not paid for all hours worked, including overtime and hours worked on Saturdays, to which she was entitled under the Hair and Beauty Industry Award 2010. The salon allegedly also failed to provide payslips.

The inspector issued a Compliance Notice to the company in October 2020 but the company, without reasonable excuse, reportedly failed to comply with the notice.

My Salon Erina Pty Ltd faces a maximum penalty of $31,500 for failing to comply with the Compliance Notice and a penalty of up to $63,000 for failing to provide payslips. Lal faces maximum penalties of $6300 for his alleged involvement in the Compliance Notice contraventions and up to $12,600 for his alleged involvement in the payslip contravention.

The regulator is also seeking orders for the company to comply with the Compliance Notice, which includes rectifying any underpayments in full, plus superannuation and interest.

A hearing is scheduled in the Federal Circuit Court in Sydney on 9 April 2021.

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