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Are you at risk of an underpayment claim?

By Beatrice Thomas

You might not realise you’re at risk of an underpayment claim.

But a quick check-up can save you a costly resolution process.

We’ve all read about cases of high-profile Australian businesses underpaying their staff.

Businesses of all sizes and across all sectors have been caught out — even those with well-informed and resourced HR teams who thought they had it covered.

And one underpayment case could turn into a serious breach in workplace law, high penalties and significant reputational damage and costs to the business.

The result is a long and complicated resolution process.

Avoiding staff underpayments is critical for your business

Ensuring accuracy of payments is important but it can get more difficult to navigate when shift work and penalty rates are involved.

Your calculations may not be up to date if you have not recorded:

  • additional shifts of staff;
  • a person’s role, classification type or change in qualifications and duties; or
  • your business pays flat rates or annualised salaries.

Assess your own risk

To assess potential or risk of any underpayments, organisations should consider conducting regular payroll audits.

A quick self-assessment can help you get a sense of your own risk. Answer the questions below to check the status of your business. Our Workplace Relations team can help with an independent audit.

That initial call is included in your CCIWA Membership. And, if something serious is uncovered, you are also entitled to reduced legal rates from our Business Law WA team.

Question 1. What industry is your business in?

Question 2. Does your business have written employment contracts in place?

Question 2a. Does your contract contain an off-setting clause

Question 3. Does your business pay all-inclusive flat hourly rates or annualised salaries?

Question 4. Do you employ casuals or workers on irregular rosters or shifts?

High Risk

Based on your answers, your business has a high risk of underpaying your employees. We highly recommend contacting our team of Workplace Relations Consultants on (08) 9365 7660 or complete your details below and we’ll contact you.

Medium Risk

Based on your answers, your business has a medium risk of underpaying your employees. We recommend contacting our team of Workplace Relations Consultants.

Low Risk

Based on your answers, your business has a low risk of underpaying your employees. We recommend contacting our team of Workplace Relations Consultants.

An annual payroll audit will help you minimise the risk of underpayments. Call CCIWA’s Employment Relations Advice Centre on (08) 9365 7660 or via advice@cciwa.com.

You might not realise you’re at risk of an underpayment claim.

But a quick check-up can save you a costly resolution process.

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