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Source: Employment New Zealand

The order was made by the Employment Relations Authority (ERA) in a recent determination. This follows an earlier Labour Inspectorate investigation into the matter.

Businessman Vijay Singh, the sole shareholder and director of Laxmi Narayan Restaurant Ltd, trading as Karfa Moroccan Cuisine, was also ordered to pay a further $11,250 in penalties to the Crown.

He was found to have unlawfully deducted money from his restaurant manager’s wages over a 2-year period, underpaid him, failed to pay him for holidays and leave, and under-recorded the hours the employee worked in exchange for having helped him obtain a work visa.

This resulted in the employee regularly receiving payment for fewer hours than he had worked and he was working up to 25 hours a week for which he wasn’t being paid.

The ERA ordered Laxmi Narayan Restaurant Ltd to pay the employee:

  • minimum wage arrears of $19,320.53
  • unlawful deductions of $3,865.79
  • holiday and leave arrears of $3,674.07
  • interest of $2,019.27.

Laxmi Narayan Restaurant Ltd is ordered to pay penalties of $17,000 while Mr Singh must pay a penalty of $5,500. Half the penalty amounts are to be paid to the employee and the other half to the Crown. If Laxmi Narayan Restaurant Ltd is unable to pay, Mr Singh is liable for both amounts.