$52,800 Penalty For Underpaying Sydney Real Estate Salesperson

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22nd January 2010, 05:21pm - Views: 529

People Feature Fair Work Ombudsman 1 image

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Fair Work Infoline: 13 13 94 

Media Release

22 Jan 2010

$52,800 penalty for underpaying Sydney real

estate salesperson 

A Sydney real estate agency and its director have been fined a total of $52,800

for exploiting a real estate sales person by paying him just $6.58 an hour.

Gateway Real Estate (Sydney) Pty Ltd - which operates the Richardsons at Umina

Beach agency - has been fined $44,000 and the company’s sole director Marie

Lois Jones a further $8800.

Chief Industrial Magistrate Gregory Hart handed down the penalty following a

prosecution by the Fair Work Ombudsman.

Gateway paid the salesman a flat rate of $250 per week from April to December,

2007, which equated to $6.58 per hour – but he was entitled to be paid at least

the federal minimum wage, which was $13.47 to $14.65 at the time.

Jones was also involved in failing to pay out the salesman’s accrued annual leave

entitlements when his position was terminated.

The salesman was underpaid a total of $8694. The Court ordered that Jones’

$8800 fine be paid to the salesman.

Chief Industrial Magistrate Hart said the contraventions were “deliberate”,

“serious” and “constituted a blatant disregard” for the salesman’s entitlements.

“It is desirable for a clear message to be conveyed to employers in industry to the

effect that industrial instruments are not to be blatantly flouted, and employees

exploited, to achieve financial benefit for the employer,” he said in his judgment.

“Where such conduct is detected, the Courts will apply heavy penalties in

accordance with the legislative framework set by the parliament.”

Fair Work Ombudsman Executive Director Michael Campbell says the case sends

a clear message that businesses caught exploiting workers will pay a price.

“Every worker has a fundamental right to receive their full legal entitlements and

we will consider legal action to protect that right,” he said.

The Fair Work Ombudsman promotes harmonious, productive and co-operative

workplaces. It also monitors compliance and investigates breaches of national

workplace laws.

Employers or employees seeking assistance should contact the Fair Work Infoline

on 13 13 94 or visit www.fairwork.gov.au. For translations call 13 14 50.

Media: Craig Bildstien, 0419 818 484. craig.bildstien@fwo.gov.au

Ryan Pedler, (03) 9954 2561, 0434 365 924. ryan.pedler@fwo.gov.au

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