The Anti-Wage and Social Dumping Act (Lohn und Sozialdumping-Bekämpfungsgesetz) has the goal of ensuring equal wage conditions for workers in Austria.
Administrative Penalties for Undercutting Fixed Wage Levels
Undercutting wage levels which workers are entitled to according to legislation, regulations or a collective agreement can result in an administrative penalty. Whether the so-called basic wage is undercut or not is no longer relevant.
The Range of Penalties in Relation to Wage Inspections
The range of penalties for not keeping wage records on file and – in the case of employers or employment agencies based abroad, for not keeping wage records on file – have been brought into line with those for underpayment.
Depending on the number of employees affected and whether the administrative offence has been committed previously, the penalties range from €1000 to €5000. Employment agencies and employers abroad now have to provenly make wage documentation available, and hirers also commit an offence if they do not keep such documentation on file. The penalties for circumventing inspections have also been increased to up to €20,000. Not sending documentation in spite of being called upon to do so is also subject to penalties.
As in the case of undercutting wages, circumventing inspections and not keeping wage records available can lead to a company being prohibited from carrying out its business activities.
Extended Safeguarding Measures
If there are grounds for suspicion of an administrative offence, and if there are reasons to expect there may at least be considerable impediments to the prosecution of the offender, the measures taken to ensure the payment of administrative penalties are extended by:
- Demanding provisional collateral (money or objects belonging to the employer or agency
- The freezing of payments to the contractor or hirer by the inspection authorities.
In addition, these safeguards to ensure the payment of fines for all administrative offences can be imposed in accordance with the Anti-Wage and Social Dumping Act.