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Café worker paid less than minimum wage wins supreme court case

After café worker Ms. Robinson sustained a workplace injury in 2014, she lodged a successful claim with Return to Work SA (RTWSA) for weekly income payments. However, RTWSA used another unrelated workplace injury settled out of Court in 1998 against Ms. Robinson as a reason to reduce her entitled payments.
This was despite the 1998 injury occurring 16 years prior to the 2014 injury and having no relevance to the case. Feeling that this was unfair, Ms. Robinson sought advice from Mahony’s Lawyers. Mahony’s Lawyers found that RTWSA was paying Ms. Robinson a weekly income payment below the Federal Minimum Wage, which was against the law. Mahony’s Lawyers launched into action and argued against RTWSA’s decision in the South Australian Employment Tribunal.
Due to the fact that this argument had never been raised before in the State of South Australia, the full bench of the Tribunal heard Ms. Robinson’s case. Mahony’s Lawyers successfully convinced the full bench that it was unfair to prevent Ms. Robinson from obtaining more weekly income simply because of an unrelated injury many years before. RTWSA were displeased with this outcome and appealed this decision to the full bench of the State’s highest Court, the South Australian Supreme Court.
Due to the significance of this case, the Government of South Australia intervened and the Supreme Court sought the assistance of senior Queen’s Counsel to assist them with the ruling. Eventually, the Supreme Court found that RTWSA were incorrect in the manner that they determined Ms. Robinson’s entitlement and that she was actually entitled to compensation.
If Ms. Robinson had not sought advice from expert solicitors, she would still have been living below the minimum wage. Mahony’s Lawyers assisted Ms. Robinson with no out of pocket expense to her. If Mahony’s Lawyers had not done so, Ms Robinson would not have been able to afford legal representation.

It is extremely important to seek advice on every decision from RTWSA and query your solicitor about the fairness of any decision. If you have experienced something similar, Mahony’s Lawyers will fight for your rights. Get in touch to schedule an obligation-free meeting with our expert team.

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