Most employers do the right thing and pay their employees the prescribed rates of pay under the Fair Work Commission Modern Awards or the National Minimum Wage. A small minority do not, and if you’re employed by one of these then you are missing out on what is rightfully your entitlement.

Between 2018-2019, the Fair Work Ombudsman recovered a total of $40 million worth of underpayments for approximately 18,000 employees – that’s approximately $2,222 per employee.

From our experience, the five tell-tale signs of being underpaid include:

  1. Being paid below the National Minimum Wage. The National Minimum Wage is currently (as at May 2020) $19.49 per hour or $740.80 per week of full-time work (38 hours).
  2. You are covered by a specific Modern Award such as the Health Professionals and Support Services Award 2010 and your hourly rate of pay has not increased in the past 12 months.
  3. If you are covered by a Modern Award, work more than 38 hours per week and do not receive an ‘overtime’ rate which generally 1.5 to 2 times your ordinary hourly rate.
  4. If you are covered by a Modern Award, work weekends or nights and are not paid a ‘penalty’ rate.
  5. You do not receive pay slips and despite requesting them from your employer; you get palmed off and never receive them.

If you see any of these signs, then it is critical that you take prompt action. There is a 6 year limitation period from when you make a claim. For example, if you were underpaid between 2013 to 2014, that period is more than 6 years ago and you will not able to take any action to recover any underpayments during that period, (although you will be able to claim for more recent underpayments).

If you do not feel comfortable approaching your employer, give The JFMLAW Team on (02) 9199 8597 to discuss a quick, cheap and effective strategy to resolve your underpayment.