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Offence By Worker Relating To Money Owed To Employer

Offence By Worker Relating To Money Owed To Employer
Minister for Employment, Productivity, and Industrial Relations Jone Usamate.
September 02
10:21 2018

A worker who owes money to the employer in respect of wages or benefits in kind received in advance and leaves the service of the employer with the intent of not returning and where it appears that the worker intended to defraud the employer commits an offence and is liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding $5000, or to a term of imprisonment not exceeding two years or both.

This was highlighted by the Minister for Employment, Productivity and Industrial Relations Jone Usamate after receiving queries from the President of the Labasa Chamber of Commerce Mr. Satish Kumar on the issue during the Northern public consultation earlier last week.

Mr Kumar queried on actions that employer can take if an employee decided not to return to work after exhausting the maternity leave entitlement.

Mr Usamate pointed out the importance of having employment contracts in place because of such circumstances to protect both the employer and the employee as it regulates the behaviour of the employee in the workplace.

An employment contract is a binding agreement between an employer and employee and generally addresses important aspects of employment such as wages, benefits, duties and responsibilities of employee and employer and other issues relating to the terms and conditions of employment.

“Oral contracts apply to a worker who will be employed for a month and written contract applies to a worker who will be employed for more than a month,” Mr Usamate said.

The Minister for Employment emphasised that the Ministry protects and looks after the interests of both workers and employers.

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