Shutters And Blinds Business In Court

The Fair Work Ombudsman has commenced legal action against the operators of a Sydney-based business that manufactures and supplies shutters and blinds.

Facing court are Open Close It Pty Ltd, which operates Shutters Quickly at Lansvale in south-west Sydney, and the company’s sole director, Nicholas Paxinos.

The regulator investigated after receiving a request for assistance from a Chinese visa holder who was employed by Open Close It on a full-time basis as a roller blinds manufacturer between July 2021 and February 2022.

A Fair Work Inspector issued a Compliance Notice to Open Close It in December 2022 after forming a belief the worker had been underpaid minimum wages and overtime rates owed under the Manufacturing and Associated Industries and Occupations Award 2020.

The Fair Work Ombudsman alleges Open Close It, 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 the worker is owed at least $3,482.

It is alleged Mr Paxinos was involved in the contravention.

Acting Fair Work Ombudsman Michael Campbell 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,” Mr Campbell said.

“Employers also need to be aware that taking action to protect vulnerable workers such as visa holders is a priority for the Fair Work Ombudsman. Visa holders have the same workplace rights as all other workers.

“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, Open Close It Pty Ltd faces a penalty of up to $41,250 and Mr Paxinos faces a penalty of up to $8,250.

The regulator is also seeking orders for the company to rectify the alleged underpayment in full, plus interest and superannuation. A hearing is listed in the Federal Circuit and Family Court in Sydney on 17 May 2024.

/Public Release. View in full here.