Burger chain forced to pay $1.1m owed to staff
A FAST food chain has been forced to back-pay workers more than $1 million after underpaying them for seven years.
The Australian arm of Japanese burger chain MOS Burger was found to have underpaid staff members at its Surfers Paradise, Southport and Broadbeach stores between 2011 and 2018, along with more employees at its Brisbane stores.
A total of 285 workers were underpaid across the six stores, a Fair Work Ombudsman investigation found.
Staff, many of them visa holders and young workers, worked across food preparation, customer service and management.
MOS Burger has been forced to back-pay $1.12 million to former and current employees.
The biggest payout was to an employee who was underpaid $31,975.
Fair Work inspectors found that the company had paid unlawfully low flat rates to workers, and misclassified some employees as part-time when they were actually casuals.
Breaches of workplace laws included failures to pay ordinary hourly rates, casual loadings, and penalty rates for night, weekend and public holiday hours.
Fair Work Ombudsman Sandra Parker said the company had now rectified all unpaid wages and superannuation, and paid an additional seven per cent compensation to workers.
"The company conducted a comprehensive audit of its pay records from when it commenced trading in Australia, fully back-paid workers and overhauled its processes to comply with workplace laws," she said.
"The Fair Work Ombudsman is cracking down on underpayments in the Fast Food, Restaurant and cafe sector, and any employees with concerns about their pay should contact us."