Hair And Beauty Salon In Court

The Fair Work Ombudsman has commenced legal action against the operators of a hair and beauty salon in regional South Australia.

Facing court are Frances Fimmano and Rocco Fimmano, as co-trustees for R & R River Trust which operates Pure Bliss Spa & Beauty in Gawler, north of Adelaide.

The regulator investigated after receiving a request for assistance from a young worker that was employed at the salon as a casual beauty therapist between February 2021 and March 2022. The worker was aged between 24 and 25 at the time.

A Fair Work Inspector issued a Compliance Notice to the co-trustees in December 2022 after forming a belief that the worker had been underpaid casual minimum wages and Saturday penalty rates owed under the Hair and Beauty Industry Award 2020.

The Fair Work Ombudsman alleges Ms Fimmano and Mr Fimmano, without reasonable excuse, failed to comply with the Compliance Notice, which required them to calculate and back-pay the worker’s entitlements.

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.

“Employers also need to be aware that taking action to protect young workers is among our top priorities. Any employees with concerns about their pay or entitlements should contact the Fair Work Ombudsman for free assistance.”

The FWO is seeking penalties in court. For the alleged failure to comply with the Compliance Notice, Ms Fimmano and Mr Fimmano each face a penalty of up to $8,250.

The regulator is also seeking a court order requiring the operators to rectify the alleged underpayment in full, plus interest and superannuation.

A directions hearing is listed in the Federal Circuit and Family Court in Adelaide on 14 May 2024.

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