The Fair Work Ombudsman has commenced legal action against a Melbourne-based residential building and construction company and its director.
Facing court are Procraft Group Pty Ltd and the company’s sole director, Bradley Busuttil.
The regulator investigated after receiving a request for assistance from a worker the company employed on a full-time basis as a carpenter between February 2021 and December 2022.
A Fair Work Inspector issued a Compliance Notice to Procraft Group in September 2022 after forming a belief the worker had not been paid accrued but untaken annual leave entitlements when his employment ended, owed under the Fair Work Act’s National Employment Standards.
The Fair Work Ombudsman alleges Procraft Group, without reasonable excuse, failed to comply with the Compliance Notice, which required it to calculate and back-pay the worker’s entitlements.
It is alleged Mr Busuttil was involved in the contravention.
Fair Work Ombudsman Anna Booth said the regulator would continue to enforce workplace laws and take businesses to court where lawful requests are not complied with.
“Where employers do not comply, we will take appropriate action to protect employees. A court can order a business to pay penalties in addition to back-paying workers,” Ms Booth said.
“Any employees with concerns about their pay or entitlements should contact the Fair Work Ombudsman for free assistance.”
The FWO is seeking penalties for the alleged failure to comply with the Compliance Notice. Procraft Group faces a penalty of up to $33,300 and Mr Busuttil faces a penalty of up to $6,660.
The regulator is also seeking an order requiring Procraft Group to rectify the alleged underpayment in full, plus interest.
The next directions hearing is listed in the Federal Circuit and Family Court in Melbourne on 6 March 2024.