The claim against Credico has two main parts.
Illegal Contracting and Underpayments
Chamberlains will allege that individuals given Independent Contractor contracts were miscategorised and should be recognised as employees. As explained above under ‘Sham Contracting’, most of Credico’s contractors should have been classed as employees and therefore should have been paid under the appropriate award.
Credico being the employer by extension of those working for the franchise companies is liable for the shortfall in payments made to their employees. It is this shortfall which Chamberlains seeks to recover in the class action against Credico.
False use of term ‘Business Owner’
Business owners have absolute control over how, where and when they do business. They set their own procedures and goals. They must take out insurance, remit GST and pay income tax. They take on the risk of running a business and, ultimately, own their share in the business.
Credico has been found to have a great deal of control over smaller franchise companies that managed the day to day operations of sales. All franchisees were made to engage Certica for payroll services and generally were given instructions by Credico’s executives and employees for how the business was to operate. Hence, it will be argued that the franchises were not stand-alone businesses but part of Credico’s company structure.
The claim will allege that rather than running their own small business, franchisees were working for Credico as employees and were entitled to minimum employment entitlements by law.
To register your claim against Credico click here.