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What are unpaid wages and entitlements

Unpaid wages and entitlements happen when you fail to pay the minimum monetary amount or the allowances that are set out in the modern award or agreement that your employees work under.

It can happen in many ways, including:

  • paying less than the minimum hourly rate
  • failure to pay penalty rates, overtime and allowances
  • taking inappropriate deductions from wages
  • refusing to allow leave
  • demanding wages be paid back in “cash-back” schemes
  • paying employees in cash “off the books”
  • unpaid work experience or internships

As an employer, there is no excuse for not meeting your legal workplace obligations to your employees, including paying them the proper hourly rate, overtime, penalties, leave, allowances and entitlements.

The national minimum wage

From July 1 2019, the minimum wage is $19.49 an hour, or $740.80 for a 38-hour week. 

Casual employees get at least a 25 percent loading on top of that.

If you are paying any member of your staff less than this, you are contravening workplace laws and need to take immediate action to rectify the matter.

We can help you avoid a claim for wage theft

Penalties for contravening workplace laws, like underpaying your staff, can be substantial and have the potential to bankrupt your business.

Our team of industrial relations specialists at Employer Advisors can help your business avoid unintentional underpayments and subsequent claims for wage theft. 

How do I know which award applies to my employees?

Different jobs in different industries have different minimum pay rates and allowances and entitlements.

The specific wages and entitlements that you are eligible for can depend on your age, the state you live in, the industry you work in, your qualifications and your duties and responsibilities.

To check which award applies to your job, visit the Fair Work Ombudsman website and use the Find My Award Pay Calculator.

https://calculate.fairwork.gov.au/findyouraward


If you are having a workplace issue, our team at Employer Advisors can help.

Please call us today on 

1300 853 837

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