The operator of Vinh Phat Chinese Seafood Restaurant in Cabramatta, Sydney will face court 25 August, after allegedly failing to comply with an Enforceable Undertaking.

Double Hats Pty Ltd entered into the Enforceable Undertaking after it was found the company had paid staff flat rates as low as $18 per hour. Although the company has since back-paid 22 workers almost $80,000 and made a $5,000 contrition payment, the Fair Work Ombudsman says it failed to commission an external accounting professional to audit its compliance for a one-month period and subsequently rectify any identified underpayments.

The FWO attempted to secure voluntary compliance before commencing legal proceedings, but alleges the company is now several months in default of the audit obligations.

“Enforceable Undertakings allow the Fair Work Ombudsman to achieve effective outcomes such as prompt back payment of workers and commit employers to ongoing compliance measures, which may not be possible through litigation,” said Fair Work Ombudsman Sandra Parker.

“However, if a company fails to fulfil the commitments it makes under an Enforceable Undertaking, we will take legal action to protect the integrity of our enforcement tools.”

The FWO is seeking court orders requiring Double Hats to comply with the terms of the EU by completing the audit, providing a copy of the audit report to the FWO and making back-payments, plus interest, to any underpaid staff.

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