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Our WPR team makes 'easy breezy' work of unfair dismissal case

Submitted on Friday, 17th June 2016

The Victorian Chamber has successfully represented Neon Cosmetics in an unfair dismissal matter before the Fair Work Commission. Neon Cosmetics dismissed a supervisor for serious misconduct in December 2015, after it was found the supervisor was falsifying timesheets and claiming overtime for work he had not completed. The Commission heard evidence that the employer regularly checking the carpark for the supervisor’s car at the times claimed, found discrepancies between the manufacturing records and pay book of the supervisor, and an incriminating text message exchange between the supervisor in question and another employee, containing the ex-employee’s statement “yea but it’s only half an hour here n there”.

Commissioner Wilson found the ex-employee was inconsistent in his defence, offering a range of explanations about the timesheet discrepancies. Reasons offered by the supervisor included that he had left the premises to get his breakfast down the road so his car was not present in the car park, his time worked outside ordinary hours could be aggregated with an overtime claim made at a later date, and that two other employees may have been lying when they said they did not see him at work at the times claimed.

The Commissioner also found that the employee had sought another employee to assist him in ‘covering for him’ and lying about his presence at work, and when given an opportunity to respond, the employee had been dishonest.

This FWC claim and outcome highlights the benefits of engaging one of our experienced consultants to assist with the unfair dismissal process.  Had this claim been successful, Neon Cosmetics may have been ordered to reinstate an untruthful supervisor or faced paying compensation up to a maximum of six months’ pay.  In our Responding to Fair Work Commission Claims in Melbourne on 25 August, our experienced consultants will share some of their secrets and experience to help you understand the process, from initial response to appeals process. Learn more about the types of claims the Fair Work Commission deals with and how to put your best foot forward to defend your business and keep costs down.

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