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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2008

    Default Employer keeps putting off work contract and then fires employees

    Sorry this is a bit off topic,but we have a daughter and her partner who were hired to manage a lodge.
    The owner said they would be running the place on a commission basis as the last managers had let the place go according to him.
    They have been there for 3-4 months in which time they have improved the place,by working long hours.
    They have good feedback on trip adviser etc.
    Each time they have brought up signing a work contract(suppose to be for 1 year) the owner has brushed it off.
    Now,as they are about to go on one of the promised 10 day breaks(promised 2 a year) the owner who arrived a few days ago has fired them,giving them 1 day to vacate the room where they reside to make room for a person who works 3 hrs a day for free accommodation(this is a friend of theirs who they have made the arrangement with)(and is not keen to carry on it seems)
    I feel clearly they have been exploited,but with no employment contract do they have any recourse?

    They have put their heart and soul into this job and she is understandably feeling shaken and isolated.
    We will find out more when she skypes us later (when she is not at the lodge) but i want to give her as much info as possible.
    So far I have told her to let as many of their acquaintances know as possible.
    I feel the owner is now waiting for the next couple that he can exploit (but of coarse thats just my opinion)
    Apparently the reason he gave for firing them was that it was costing him to much money.(?)
    Our daughter is from another area (both legal to work)but easy targets,with no family near etc.
    This was basically a verbal contract which I realize is very difficult.
    Any other key bits of information that would help with advice I will do my best to find out

    Any helpful information will be thankfully appreciated Cheers
    Last edited by skid; 30-09-2013 at 05:12 PM.

  2. #2


    Why don't you give these people in Townsville a call now, and they may be able to suggest what next .

    "Townsville Community Legal Service (TCLS) is a non-profit community legal centre that offers services that are readily accessible, informal and available to all members of the community."

    We offer legal advice by appointment on Thursdays between 6pm and 8pm.

    We can advise on most legal matters during our Thursday evening legal advice service. However, we cannot advise on personal injuries, native title, conveyancing or provide mortgage certification.

    We refer clients to private solicitors and other agencies where appropriate.

    The Thursday evening legal advice service would not be possible without the volunteers who generously provide their time and expertise to support TCLS and its objectives.

    Please phone 4721 5511 during office hours to make an appointment.
    Last edited by speights boy; 30-09-2013 at 12:56 PM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2008


    Thanx for that SB Ill Pass it on to her--meanwhile Ive been reading the reviews on trip adviser and they have scores of glowing reviews--Why an owner would sac a hard working couple that is promoting so much for the place is beyond me.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2005


    When they've left, make sure they put their own review of the place on Trip Advisor.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2008



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2008


    Apparently the community law office doesnt do anything related to work.(thanx anyway S B)
    New developments.
    Although they have worked really hard and improved the place both physically and increased business--they have well and truly screwed up the books-forgetting to put in some entries and not keeping a fair amount of receipts.(my daughter made the entries in the book but didnt keep reciepts) Doh...
    The owner is totally pissed off and has not only given them the boot,but is holding $3000 each and is threatening to get the police involved so they are totally freaked.
    They were given no training and honestly thought that they were helping but obviously were lacking in book keeping skills(the accountant is not happy-and the owner is downright stroppy)
    They insist that although they were stupid (in retrospect)they never took anything-no fraud-just stuff ups.
    Im not sure what the owner would have to prove if he did carry out his threat but ATM they are afraid to even go to Fair work thinking they might get prosecuted and not be able to come back to OZ.
    I think they should fight it but fair work doesnt really have an email that i could send to get their opinion without filling in complaint form with names (ours)etc which would probably make them even more scared.
    I look at these stories of big corporation accountants doing all sorts off really bad stuff and getting off from lack of proof and then heres 2 young adults getting shafted(i think) of their hard earned cash and it upsets me.
    So I guess im looking for any off the record advice --can the employer really hold $6000 because of missing entrees and lost receipts?
    Even though he thinks it looks really suspicious?
    Im actually looking for information that would give them the confidence to fight for their money owed.
    Any educated advice would be well appreciated..
    Last edited by skid; 12-10-2013 at 05:39 PM.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2004


    They should look for a local employment advocate. They will often represent employees for a percentage of a payout if the case looks good.


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