Plumbing business to face court for allegedly underpaying young worker

A plumbing business based in western Sydney is set to face court for the alleged underpayment of a young worker. According to the Fair Work Ombudsman, Mathew Glenn Jones, a sole trader operating businesses known as Jordan Springs Plumbing and Air Conditioning and Jordan Springs Plumbing and Excavation, underpaid a plumbing and mechanical services worker over a 10-day period in November 2020.

Upon investigation by a Fair Work Inspector, it was determined that the worker, who was aged 18 at the time, was entitled to the casual minimum hourly wage rate and an industry allowance under the Plumbing and Fire Sprinklers Award 2010 but was not paid his minimum entitlements for the work he performed.

A Compliance Notice was issued to Jones in February 2021 but it is alleged that Jones, without reasonable excuse, failed to comply with the Compliance Notice requiring him to calculate and back-pay the worker’s entitlements.

“Under the Fair Work Act, Compliance Notices are important tools used by inspectors if they form a belief that an employer has breached workplace laws,” Fair Work Ombudsman Sandra Parker commented. Where employers do not comply with our requests, we will take appropriate action to protect employees.”

Jones faces a penalty of up to $6660 and a court order compelling him to act up the Compliance Notice that requires that he calculates and rectifies the underpayments in full, plus superannuation and interest.

A directions hearing has been listed in the Federal Circuit Court in Sydney on 12 August 2021.