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by editor arbor age

New employment obligations – Casual Employment Information Statement and updated Fair Work Information Statement.

In accordance with the amendments to the Fair Work Act that commenced on March 27, 2021, the Fair Work Ombudsman has prepared and published a Casual Employment Information Statement and updated the Fair Work Information Statement.

The Fair Work Amendment (Supporting Australia’s Jobs and Economic Recovery) Bill 2021 was recently passed by the Australian Parliament. These amendments to the Fair Work Act (the Act) commenced on March 27, 2021. In accordance with these amendments, the Fair Work Ombudsman (FWO) has prepared and published a Casual Employment Information Statement (CEIS). Employers must provide the gazetted CEIS to both existing and new casual employees.

The FWO has also updated the Fair Work Information Statement (‘FWIS’) to reflect these recent amendments to the Act. For clarity, new casual employees must be provided with both the CEIS and FWIS.

Casual employment information statement Employers must provide a copy of the CEIS to:
new casual employees before or as soon as possible after commencing casual employment with the employer,
existing casual employees (small business employers*) as soon as possible after 27 March 2021,
• existing casual employees (other employers) as soon as possible after 27 September 2021.

Fewer than 15 employees
A copy of the CEIS can be given to a casual employee either in person, by email, post or via a link to the CEIS on the FWO website, with the employee’s consent.

Copies of both Information Statements can be obtained from the TTIA at (02) 9264 0011 or from the FWO website.

Fair work compliance audits
Fair Work Inspectors recently targeted 45 businesses in and around the Hobart area in Tasmania.

Of the 35 businesses in breach, 32 had underpaid their workers and 24 had failed to meet payslip and record-keeping requirements.

The most commonly found breaches were failures to pay minimum wages (27 businesses), followed by failure to pay casual loading (21 businesses).

In response to the breaches, the FWO issued 34 compliance notices, recovering $582,450 for 376 workers. There were also 22 infringement notices issued, resulting in $30,030 in fines paid.

Businesses back-paid 376 employees, with amounts ranging from $868 for three workers at a business in the Constitution Dock area to $150,905 for 55 employees in the North Hobart area.

The FWO said it commenced legal action against one employer and company majority shareholder and manager for allegedly failing to comply with a Compliance Notice that required it to calculate and back-pay any underpayments.

It is also alleged that the company failed to make and keep employee records and that the manager was allegedly involved in that breach, with four of the employees being young workers and one was on a visa.

Further, the FWO said litigation is also being considered in relation to another business, while all other non-compliant businesses were advised that any future breaches may lead to higher-level enforcement action.

A Fair Work Ombudsman spokesperson said the unannounced audits were part of a national program that also targeted businesses in Melbourne, Brisbane, Sydney, Adelaide and Perth.

TTIA provides an in-house wages and payroll audit service by qualified staff to tree contractors. Should you wish to arrange a Payroll Audit this will be conducted in a confidential manner, and any action plan as a result will be formulated between TTIA and our Member.

In light of these recent audits by the Fair Work Ombudsman, it is an opportune time for a reminder that the team at TTIA can be contacted on (02) 9264 0011 should you wish to book this service which is available in all States.

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