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$53,000 For Exploiting Migrant Worker

Published 03 Sep 2016

Wellington employer Sun 2 Moon has  been ordered to pay $53,000 to ex-employee by the Employment Relations Authority (ERA).

The boss was found in serious breach of minimum employment standards after exploiting immigrant workers.

$53,000 in penalties and arrears was granted to the worker following the Employer found to be charging the Employee premiums to be employed by the company.

Starting with an upfront charge of $5000, followed by frequent small cash payments of over $3200 and funding company expenses to over $2100 by creditcard were the costs placed on the Employee throughout the course of his employment.

Labour Inspectorate of MBIE brought the case to the ERA following a complaint from the worker regarding these charges.

ERA member ordered $25,000 to be paid for breaching various employment laws, and an additional $28,781 for arrears, minimum wage, holiday pay and reimbursement of premiums. It is understood Sun 2 Moon no longer trades.

Regional manager Loua Ward of the Labour Inspectorate followed by stating "no employer should require staff to pay premiums or pay back wages.  The level of non-compliance identified during this investigation was very disappointing given the significant breaches of minimum employment standards. This ruling sends a clear message to employers that failure to comply with minimum employment labour standards will not be tolerated."