The Wage Theft Act 2020 (Vic) (the “Act”) came into force on 1 July 2021. The Act makes it a criminal offence to deliberately and dishonestly withhold employee entitlements, or fail to keep or falsify employee records for the purpose of obtaining a financial advantage. There are significant financial penalties for corporations and individuals found guilty of an offence, and individuals may also be subject to a term of imprisonment of up to 10 years.
The Act runs alongside the Commonwealth Fair Work Act 2009, which also deals with underpayments and the maintenance of employee records, but creates more significant penalties. It also establishes the Wage Inspectorate Victoria for the purpose of investigating and prosecuting offences.
Last week our lawyers ran a presentation on wage theft for CPA accountants which covered the Act, its interaction with the Fair Work Act 2009 and the powers of the Wage Inspectorate. If you would like to learn more about the Act or are interested in our presentation, please call us on (03) 9642 0435 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for a confidential discussion with our team.