Register Apprentices Without Delay - Victorian Employers Urged

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6th December 2009, 01:00pm - Views: 488





People Feature Fair Work Ombudsman 1 image

People Feature Fair Work Ombudsman 2 image


Fair Work Infoline: 13 13 94 



Media Release




              6 Dec 2009


Register apprentices without delay 


The Fair Work Ombudsman is urging Victorian employers not to delay registering new

apprentices.

Executive Director Michael Campbell says it is important employers do not delay

lodgements of apprenticeship agreements for young workers.

“Only registered apprentices can be paid apprentice rates, but we are finding some

employers paying at this level despite not having officially registered their workers,” he

said.  

“When inspectors come across cases where employers have been erroneously paying a

worker apprentice rates for some time, the business can find itself faced with a significant

underpayment. The employer ends up being hit with a hefty bill for back-payment of

wages that was not budgeted for.”

Mr Campbell says that despite receiving their proper entitlements, the young workers also

suffer if they have to start their formal apprenticeship again. 

“Some employers seem to think they can pay apprenticeship rates if the intention is to

sign an apprenticeship agreement and that agreements can be back-dated,” he said. “This

is often not the case.” 


Recent examples of this occurring include:



A young Narre Warren construction being back-paid $9680 after his employer paid

him apprentice rates for several months despite not intending to register him as an

apprentice,



A mechanic’s assistant in the City of Bayside not being registered as an apprentice

but being paid as an apprentice on the grounds that he was still studying. The

employer is back-paying him $8250 via instalments,



A

young Geelong labourer being paid apprentice rates for several months despite his

employer not lodging an apprenticeship agreement. The employer had to back-pay the

worker $5893, and



A Melbourne CBD hairdresser being back-paid $5765 after her employer delayed

lodgement of the apprenticeship agreement by several months. 


Mr Campbell says the issue is state-wide across a variety of industries, with several

complaints coming from apprentices in industries including electrical trades, construction

and hairdressing.


Employers or employees seeking information or assistance should call the Fair Work

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


Media inquiries: 

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







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