Home Finance Eyebrow queen Sharon Lee taken to court for allegedly underpaying staff

Eyebrow queen Sharon Lee taken to court for allegedly underpaying staff

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A woman touted as Australia’s eyebrow queen for her artful shaping of celebrity eyebrows has found herself at the center of a legal battle. The woman touted as Australia’s eyebrow queen for her artful shaping of celebrity eyebrows is being taken to court by the workplace watchdog.

Sharon Lee Hamilton-Clarke, who is said to have tamed the brows of celebrity A-listers from Beyonce to Kim Kardashian and Leonardo DiCaprio, is being pursued by the Fair Work Ombudsman in the Federal Circuit Court.

The Ombudsman alleges Ms Hamilton-Clarke’s Sydney-based business Get Plucked Holdings, trading as Sharon Lee Inc. Eyebrow Atelier, the sole director, failed to comply with compliance notices requiring the company to calculate and back pay outstanding entitlements for two former full-time staff.

It comes after a Fair Work inspector issued a compliance notice to the company in December, 2019, believing a receptionist was underpaid minimum wages and annual leave on termination owed for her work from August to September 2019 under the Hair and Beauty Industry Award 2010.

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The company was issued a second compliance notice in February this year about a beauty therapist who was also allegedly underpaid minimum wages, annual leave on termination, and payment instead of notice of termination, owed under the same award, for her work for the company from September 2019 to March 2020.

Ms Hamilton-Clarke was allegedly involved in the company’s failure to comply with the first compliance notice. The Ombudsman asks the Federal Circuit Court to impose penalties against getting Plucked of up to $33,300 for each alleged breach of a compliance notice and fines of up to $6300 for Ms. Hamilton-Clarke.

The regulator is also seeking a court order to take action desired by the compliance notices. This includes calculating and correcting underpayments in full to the workers, plus interest and superannuation. A directions hearing is listed in the Federal Circuit Court in Sydney on Friday.

Fair Work Ombudsman Sandra Parker said the regulator would continue to clamp down on businesses that flouted workplace laws and failed to comply with lawful requests. “Compliance notices are important tools used by inspectors to deal with apparent contraventions of the Fair Work Act or industrial instruments, most typically modern awards,” Ms. Parker said.

“Where employers do not respond to or comply with compliance notices, we will take appropriate enforcement action to recover employees’ entitlements.” Ms. Parker said a court can order a business to pay penalties for not complying with such notice and back pay for workers. “Any employees with concerns about their pay or entitlements should contact us for free assistance,” she said.

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