An employer has been penalised by the ABCC for the misrepresentation of employment contracts as independent contracts.

Two employees worked exclusively for an employer.  They were paid by the hour and provided with protective clothing.  However, they were told to obtain ABNs and to lodge invoices for their work.  The employees were not paid sick leave and did not receive superannuation contributions.  The Federal Magistrates’ Court fined the employer $21,000 and its director $1,500, for misrepresenting the employment contracts as independent contracts.  Penalties were also ordered for underpaying the employees.

This is the third successful prosecution of the sham contracts provisions under the Workplace Relations Act 1996 and the Fair Work Act 2009, and the second successful prosecution by the ABCC.

ABCC v Rapid Formwork Constructions Pty Ltd & Anor [2011] FMCA 649.